Andrew Lloyd Webber’s New Musical coming to the Aldwych Theatre in London
Andrew Lloyd-Webber’s new musical is coming soon to the Aldwych theatre in London. The new musical based on the events surrounding the 1963 Profumo scandal that rocked the nation and was a stab at the heart of British politics and its seedy underbelly.
The Profumo Affair musical will be Andrew Lloyd Webber’s latest musical following on from the ill-fated Love Never Dies. The Profumo musical is expected to open in 2014 following on from the play The House, another political intrigue, which will be playing at the Aldwych theatre after Top Hat the musical closes on the 26th October 2013.
Andrew Lloyd Webber
The infamous Profumo Affair was a front-page British political scandal in 1963 in which John Profumo, the Secretary of State for War, had an affair with Christine Keeler, a call girl who was also the reputed mistress of an alleged Russian spy.
When Profumo was questioned about it in Parliament, he lied in the House of Commons, later forcing his own resignation and damaging the reputation of Prime Minister Harold Macmillan’s government. Harold MacMillan himself resigned a few months later apparently due to ill health caused by stress.
The whole affair was littered with intrigue and scandal, Profumo himself was married to an actress when he starred his affair with prostitute, Christine Keeler after meeting her at a party at the Buckinghamshire mansion owned by Lord Astor.
Profumo’s relationship with Keeler lasted only a few weeks before Profumo ended it. Rumours about the affair became public in 1962, as did the allegation that Keeler also had a relationship with a senior naval official at the Russian embassy. With Profumo’s delicate position in the government and with the Cold War at its height, the potential ramifications in terms of national security were serious, and this together with the adulterous nature of Profumo’s relationship with Keeler, quickly elevated the affair into a full-blown political and public scandal at a time when adultery was frowned upon.
Christine Keeler and her friend Mandy Rice-Davies lived with Stephen Ward, who was later accused of living off immoral earnings. Earlier Keeler’s boyfriend had attempted to force his way into Stephen Ward’s flat firing several shots in the process. Keeler meanwhile had become involved with a Jamaican drug dealer, when that relationship ended she was attacked with an axe and held her hostage for two days.
The Profumo musical will certainly have an intriguing story to tell and Andrew Lloyd Webber has reunited the team behind his hit musical Sunset Boulevard, which won seven Tony Awards and played in the West End at the Adelphi theatre. Don Black will provide the lyrics and playwright Christopher Hampton has written the book.
Andrew Lloyd Webber is currently over-seeing a run through of the show with Hal Fowler (Carousel and Macbeth) as John Profumo, Iris Roberts (currently appearing at the National in The Captain of Köpenick and soon to star in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane) as Christine Keeler, Alexander Hanson (A Little Night Music) as Stephen Ward and Carly Bawden (currently starring as Eliza Dolittle in My Fair Lady at the Crucible Theatre) as Mandy Rice Davies.
Andrew Lloyd Webber told the Daily Mail that “it’s highly unlikely that this cast will be in the completed show because they’re all booked up to do other things. All we’re doing is putting a bunch of people, who are good sight-readers, around a piano to see what works.”
Andrew Lloyd Webber’s previous hit musicals in London’s West End have included Evita, Cats, Starlight Express, The Phantom of the Opera, Jesus Christ Superstar, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and Sunset Boulevard.