Clary (pictured) follows in the footsteps of Matt Lucas, Mark Little and Boy George himself in playing the late Australian performance artist Leigh Bowery. The show - which opened on 29 January 2002 (previews from 11 January) - is now taking bookings up to 31 May 2003.
Best known for his campness and outrageous costumes, Clary started his career on the London stand-up circuit before moving into television, where he's hosted numerous quiz and comedy shows such as Sticky Moments with Julian Clary, All Rise for Julian Clary, Mr and Mrs and Prickly Heat. He also appears regularly on stage in Christmas pantomimes such as last year's Cinderella in Richmond.
Set in the 1980s London club scene, Taboo follows aspiring photographer Billy whose fictional story is interwoven with the fortunes of real-life icons including Marilyn, Steve Strange, Leigh Bowery, Philip Sallon and Boy George himself. Also in the current cast of Taboo are David Burt, John Partridge, Lyn Paul, Luke Evans, Dianne Pilkington and Euan Morton, as the young Boy George.
While Taboo includes snippets of some Culture Club classics, George has written an original score with all-new songs including "Ode to Attention Seekers", "Stranger in this World", "Love Is a Question Mark", "Guttersnipe", "Touched by the Hand of Cool", "Out of Fashion" and "Pie in the Sky". The musical has a book (now substantially revised) by This Life writer Mark Davies, with designs by Tim Goodchild, lighting by Chris Ellis and choreography by Les Childs. It is directed by Christopher Renshaw and is produced by Adam Kenwright.
- by Terri Paddock