Litmus Films

The UOGB World Tour

The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain World Tour

90 & 60min HD documentary, currently in production

What if your hobby became your living, after a quarter of a century trying?

The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain has found out, in some style.

When the band started in 1985 the ukulele couldn't have been more uncool. Its six men and two women members came from diverse backgrounds but shared an obscure passion for this neglected, maligned instrument.

For years, appreciation of their unique blend of genre-busting musicality and gut-busting comedy was limited to a loyal cult following, as they played at weekends at pubs and village halls. Their ramshackle onstage charm, appearing as a bickering, affectionate, dysfunctional family, was no act, but became one.

Then, boosted by the internet, the UOGB both helped create and benefitted from a global ukulele boom. Every day thousands of new fans around the world 'discovered' them, passing on their little secret via YouTube links. By 2009, they sold out the 6,000-seater Royal Albert Hall. With their diary full for months ahead, the last holdouts gave up their day jobs. After 25 years trying, their hobby had become their living.

To mark their slow-burn ascent to the big time in March 2012 The Ukes embarked on their first ever World Tour - with Litmus Films on the tour bus. This intimate observational documentary follows them from the UK to Australia, Germany, the USA, the North Pole, Japan and - the final frontier and ultimate performance challenge – China.

This film takes the band's meteoric rise to success as the start, not the end, of the story. Real life is more nuanced than Hollywood happy endings, and with unique and privileged access we show what really happens when your dreams come true. As they receive standing ovations from sellout crowds at iconic venues around the world, we reveal how they cope with gruelling tour schedules, family pressures and their pastime becoming their job.

 

Hot ukulele action at minus 25 degrees in Svalbard, in February's midday twilight.

Looking cool in 40 degrees on a beach near Perth, the other side of the planet.


Here's a backstage moment from the Australian tour...

 


To learn more about this documentary project, please email us at info@litmusfilms.com.