Rohan kriwaczek

Born Toby Woollcott in 1963, Rohan K. studied accordion and banjo at London’s Guild Hall School of music and Drama, graduating with a low 3rd after a bizarre banjo related incident resulted in his immediate suspension and barring from the building during his final year, a situation which left him profoundly embittered and had a huge influence on the future course of his musical career. After a number of years living from hand to mouth as a busking one man band he was “discovered” by record tycoon Paul Mystère who released his first and only hit “If Only I Had an Unbrella” which reached number 3 in the charts in March 1987 and provided him with enough money to set up his own small business collecting and transferring old 78rpm recordings to digital formats. It was in this context that he first came upon a number of wax cylinders privately recorded by the Rohan Theatre Band in 1913, and from that moment on an obsession was born. In 1988 he had his name changed by deed poll to Rohan K., after the Rohan Theatre, and spent the next eight years travelling the world seeking out any further recordings and memorabilia that came upon the open, or indeed private, markets. In June 1996 he finally tracked down the Artistic Directors of the current Rohan Theatre and, after numerous failed applications involving leverage of both moral and immoral kinds, he was invited to join the Rohan Theatre Band in March 1998. Although initially suspicious both of his motives and his aesthetic it was not long before his courage and enthusiasm were embraced by the band, and in 2001 he was appointed Musical Director, fulfilling a long held ambition. Under his direction, and encouraged by the collapse of the Music Industry, the Rohan Theatre Band has finally embraced the medium of commercial recording and virtual distribution making their works publicly available for the first time. Their first three albums (Unsavoury Songs (2002), Rants and Accusations (2003) and Cemetery Songs (2005)) each sold out their limited editions within weeks, making it apparent that they needed a larger and more experienced label behind them, and as a result in June 2006 they were signed to the Independent label Hobgoblin Records.

Noted for their acerbic wit and inner darkness, Rohan K.’s songs remain very much in the long held traditions of the Rohan Theatre Band, and indeed some are quite literally based upon the many early recordings he has collected over the years. To the legions of new fans they have acquired since venturing into the public domain under his direction, it would be impossible to imagine a Rohan Theatre Band recording without his unique dulcet tones bemoaning the fate of our society and culture, and cursing those who refuse to think for themselves. Ultimately, of course, the personnel will change once again, and the band will continue in yet another guise, but for now it seems that the Rohan Theatre Band has entered a new renaissance, and there is little doubt that in the years to come historians of the Rohan Theatre will look back on the years under Rohan K.’s direction as a second golden age in the bands long history.


  1. Biography of Rohan Kriwaczek
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Will all patrons please remain seated
Whilst I belittle myself to amuse you
For I've tried pretty metaphors and sensitive rhymes
But the effort just seemed to confuse you
Rev. Rohan K.

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