Elton Premieres Rod Stewart Musical Tonight, 6 NovDate: 2 June 2003
As previously tipped (See The Goss, 20 Mar 2003), a new musical mining popular music's back catalogue is now confirmed for the West End this autumn. Joining Abba's Mamma Mia!, Queen's We Will Rock You and Madness' Our House, the new show - Tonight's the Night, fashioned around the greatest hits of British rocker Rod Stewart - will receive its world premiere at the Victoria Palace theatre on 6 November 2003, following previews from 15 October.
Full details of the show are still unannounced though, like the other band-inspired musicals mentioned, it will not be based on the life of Stewart. The original book - apparently loosely based on the legend of Faust, who sold his soul to the devil - is scripted by the ever busy comedian-turned novelist-turned playwright-turned musical writer Ben Elton, who also wrote the book for We Will Rock You as well as for Andrew Lloyd Webber's 2000 musical The Beautiful Game.
Born in London in 1945, Rod Stewart - aka the gravely-voiced, distinctly-coiffed 'Rod the Mod' - was one of the UK's biggest rock stars in the late 1960s and 1970s. In his early years, Stewart juggled his role as lead singer for the Faces with a burgeoning solo career, which eventually took over. His many hits over the years have included "Maggie May", "Do Ya Think I'm Sexy", "You Wear It Well", "Hot Legs", "The Killing of Georgie", "First Cut Is the Deepest", "You're in My Heart", and the show's title song, "Tonight's the Night".
Currently at the Victoria Palace Theatre, Grease is scheduled to finish at the end of its current booking period on 6 September 2003. Following previous West End runs and a year-long, UK-wide tour, the nostalgic 1950s musical opened at the Victoria Palace in September 2002. It stars Ben Richards and Joanne Farrell as high school sweethearts Danny and Sandy, immortalised by John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John in the 1979 film.
- by Terri Paddock