First Orbit's producer Christopher Riley first worked with Philip in 2006 on the Sundance Award winning feature documentary film 'In the Shadow of the Moon' and since then Philip had been working on a new suite of music inspired by spaceflight.
"We'd been working with some of these tracks on another project" says Chris, "and we suddenly realised how perfectly they could compliment 'First Orbit' as well. We contacted Philip to ask his permission to use them, only to find that his entire Cloud Song album was already in orbit onboard the International Space Station!"
"NASA astronaut Cady Coleman, had them on her iPod" says Philip. "Her husband Josh Simpson is a friend of mine and they'd listened to a lot of my music together before she left, so I made up a playlist for her!"
Quite by coincidence Cady had been listening to the music in 'First Orbit' at one end of the Space Station whilst European Space Agency astronaut Paolo Nespoli was shooting for the film at the other end, without either of them knowing the connection!
Back on Earth Chris and the film's editor Stephen Slater took Philip's tracks from Cloud Song and weaved them together with Paolo's new views of the Earth to create the different moods of the film; from the first views of snowy Siberia to the darkness of night over the Pacific Ocean and the homecoming over Africa, as Gagarin starts to re-enter the atmosphere.
The result is a mesmerising combination of imagary and music which we hope convey the spectrum of emotions which no doubt went through Yuri's mind as he gazed down upon the Earth.