Musical Theatre Network Appoints New Patron and Board Members

Learn more about the new team members here!

Show of the Week: Tickets From £30 for WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION

Musical Theatre Network (MTN), which brings people and resources together to improve opportunities for new musical theatre, is thrilled to announce its new patron - Howard Goodall CBE, one of Britain's best-known composers of choral music, stage musicals, TV and film scores, and a distinguished music historian and broadcaster. His musicals, which have been performed all over the world, include The Hired Man, Love Story and Bend it Like Beckham; work in development includes Stunners, with Joanne Harris, about Pre-Raphaelite women, which premiered at Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts in 2019.

Howard joins MTN Patrons Broadway producer, Barbara Whitman, who is bringing multiple award-winning A Strange Loop to the Barbican this summer; and stage, film and television performer and recording artist, Sharon D Clarke MBE, recipient of many honours on both sides of the Atlantic, including three Olivier awards.

Directors Sir Richard Eyre CBE and Laurie Sansom are stepping down as Patrons of MTN at the same time.

MTN is also delighted to announce two new board members - PRAVESH KUMAR MBE, Artistic Director and Chief Executive of Watford-based Rifco Theatre Company, who has just released his first feature film, and AMEENA HAMID, a producer specialising in developing new plays and musicals, and who at 20 became the youngest female producer in the West End.

Having come to the end of their terms of office, board members PETER ROWE and Suzann McLean have stepped down.

Jodi Myers, Chair of Musical Theatre Network, said "We are excited that Howard, who is such a tireless champion for musical theatre and education, has agreed to become a Patron, and we are looking forward to working with Pravesh and Ameena, who bring fresh perspectives and experience to the board. We are grateful for the support of Sir Richard, Laurie, Suzann and Peter over many years and look forward to collaborating with them in the future. In the meantime, BEAM2023, MTN and Mercury Musical Development's showcase is scheduled for May 25 and 26 at Oxford Playhouse. This will be a wonderful opportunity to experience the sector's talent".


Interview: Brodie Donougher A REAL LIFE BILLY ELLIOT STORY!

What do you get when you have a ballet dancer who dreams of making it professionally and showing the world that guys can dance too?  You have a real-life Billy Elliot story, which is happening to someone who played the titular role of Billy on the West End back home in the UK, and is now here in the US studying and training in professional ballet making his dancing dreams a reality! Not only does he dance, but he has done a few acting roles as well and even participated in a professional opera as a dancer. He is taking the role, and making it his real-life story!   At the end of the musical, we see Billy leaving his home and family to head off for training at the Royal Ballet School, so this is like getting to see the story continue beyond the stage!  Broadway World Detroit got a chance to catch up with Brodie Donougher, the last person to play the role of Billy, and see what he’s up to since his days on the West End stage 7 years ago!

Review: BLACK PANTHER IN CONCERT, Royal Albert Hall

Conducted by Anthony Parnther (isn’t that the perfect name to lead this specific venture?), this European premiere features Massamba Diop on the talking drum, an instrument essential to the score. Diop, who performed the original tracks for director Ryan Coogler, is a force of nature. After a beautiful introduction by Parnther (who surprisingly does a cracking impression of James Earl Jones as Mufasa!), Diop gave a taster for what was to come: a vibrant tattoo that goes hand in hand with masterful storytelling, filling the Hall effortlessly.


Few words grab the attention like murder. And few genres outside immersive theatre can pull you physically into a specific time and place. So why aren’t there more immersive murder productions like this one?


All in all, the evening is like a group session with no guarantees of being called out or receiving answers. Believers will believe, sceptics won’t. Without going into Michael’s “gift”, the two hours are, unfortunately, rather dull. He jumps straight in between tongue-in-cheek jokes and an entertainer’s spirit. A tense silence falls onto the audience and he starts pacing around, trying to “pick up” some “energy”. He is respectful, and kind, almost apologetic for his intrusions into people’s personal lives as he glances into nothingness, pulling information out of thin air.



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