S C H O O L   O F   R O C K  –  T H E   M U S I C A L








Later this month (26 August 2017) Andrew Lloyd Webber will welcome a new group of kids to his Olivier award-winning production of School of Rock – The Musical at the New London Theatre.  Acclaimed by audiences and critics alike, the record breaking West End production of School of Rock – The Musical opened to rave reviews and in April this year the show’s ‘kids’ cast, who play live music on stage at each performance, were the recipients of the Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in Music.

For the fourth time since its West End premiere, today 4 August 2017, School of Rock – The Musical announces a further extension to its West End run, now booking to 13 January 2019.  In New York, the Broadway production now in its second year, continues to play to packed houses at the Winter Garden Theater.

Continuing the countrywide search for the opportunity to ‘join the band’, further kids open auditions will take place in the Autumn on 23 September in Liverpool and 20 and 22 November in London.  If you’re between 8 – 12 years old and play the drums, keys or the electric or bass guitar, registration and further details can be found at www.schoolofrockthemusical.co.uk/opencallor by contacting Jessica Ronane Casting at [email protected]

From 26 August 2017 the ‘kids’ cast comprises Jacob Swann, twelve years old from London, Annabel Gracey, twelve years old from Bradford and Siam Elvidge, ten years old from West Yorkshire who play Freddy; Santiago Cerchione, twelve years old from London, Phoenix Taylor, eleven years old from York and Jack Goodacre, twelve years old from Norfolk, will play Zack; Eliza Cowdery, eleven years old from Hampshire, Imogen Bowden, eleven years old from London and Audrey Newman, ten years old from London who play Katie; Cole Lam, ten years old from Surrey, Milano Preston, twelve years old from Hertfordshire and Johnny Evans-Hutchison, fourteen years old from London who play Lawrence; Joseph Black, ten years old from London, Harry Vallance, twelve years old from Essex and Archie Lewis, twelve years old from Surrey who play Billy; Aaliyah Monk, eleven years old from Suffolk, Stella Haden, eleven years old from Birmingham and Caoimhe Judd, thirteen years old from Essex, will play Summer; Tia Figgett eleven years old from East Sussex, Jasmine Sakyiama, eleven years old from Milton Keynes and Nerys Obeng, ten years old from London, will play Tomika; Nathan Reeve twelve years old from West Sussex, Stanley Jarvis twelve years old from London and Josh White, eleven years old from Worcestershire, will play James; Alex Stuckey ten years old from Essex, Charlie Vyacheslavov eleven years old from Berkshire and Dylan Miles-Davis, thirteen years old from Bradford, will play Matthew; Ellie Wilcox ten years old from London, Romanie Jija-Wakeham nine years old from London and Grace Wood eleven years old from Surrey who play Marcy; Cody Molko eleven years old from London, Austin Kindler eleven years old from London and Nicolas Ong twelve years old from Buckinghamshire who play Mason; Saffron Pennycooke eleven years old from London, Aaylia Rose nine years old from London and Miami Holness, ten years old also from London, will play Shonelle; Teri Ofon eleven years old from Surrey, Navaeah Hoath ten years old from London and Darcy Dennis, ten years old from Kent, will play Sophie.


The three teams of thirteen kids who make up Dewey’s band are joined by the adult cast comprising Gary Trainor as Dewey Finn with Florence Andrews as Rosalie Mullins, Oliver Jackson as Ned Schneebly and Preeya Kalidas as Patty Di Marco.  They are joined on stage at each performance by one of three teams of thirteen young performers who make up Dewey’s band.  The ‘grown up’ cast is completed by Stephen Leask as the alternate Dewey with ensemble members Jonathan Bourne, Nadeem Crowe, Michelle Francis, Rosanna Hyland, Cassandra McCowan, Joel Montague, Andy Rees, Cameron Sharp, Andrew Spillett, Alex Tomkins and Lucy Vandi and swings, Charlotte Bradford, Jason Denton, Cellen Chugg Jones, Alfie Parker and Tasha Sheridan.


Based on the iconic hit movie and with a rocking new score by Andrew Lloyd Webber, School of Rock – The Musical follows slacker and wannabe rock star Dewey Finn turn a class of straight-A 10 year old students into an ear popping, riff scorching, all conquering rock band!  Dewey poses as a substitute teacher at a prestigious prep school to make ends meet, and when he discovers his fifth graders’ musical talents, he enlists his class to form a rock group and conquer the Battle of the Bands. As Dewey falls for the beautiful headmistress, can he and his students keep this special assignment secret as they learn to fully embrace the power of rock?


Based on the smash hit 2003 film of the same title, School of Rock features music from the movie, as well as new music written by Andrew Lloyd Webber with lyrics by Glenn Slater and a book by Julian Fellowes.  School of Rock – The Musical is directed by Laurence Connor with choreography by JoAnn M. Hunter, set and costume designs by Anna Louizos, lighting design by Natasha Katz, sound design by Mick Potter, music supervision by John Rigby with Matt Smith as musical director.


Produced by Paramount Pictures, the 2003 hit film School of Rock was directed by Richard Linklater and starred Jack Black in a career-defining performance.

School of Rock — The Musical is produced in the West End by Andrew Lloyd Webber for The Really Useful Group and Warner Music Group & Access Industries with Madeleine Lloyd Webber as Executive Producer.


Theatre:                  New London Theatre, 166 Drury Lane, London WC2B 5PW

Dates:                    now booking to 13 January 2019

Running time:          approximately 2 hours 30 minutes including interval

Box Office:                0844 811 0052

Performances:          Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7.30pm, Thursday and Saturday 2.30pm, Sundays at 3pm

                             Please check website for Christmas schedule

Prices:                    from £15.00 – £75.00

Student rush tickets for £10 on Wednesday evening

All ticket prices include a £1.50 restoration levy.  No booking fee via official box office channels

Website:                 www.SchoolOfRockTheMusical.co.uk

Twitter & Instagram: @SchoolofRockuk

Facebook:               facebook.com/schoolofrockmusical

Fame the Musical Review

Grand Opera House York – until 5 August.  Reviewed by Michelle Richardson


Stage Experience once again brings musical theatre to the Grand Opera House York. Fame! “I’m gonna live forever” is the name of the game for this year’s show for the young cast members (aged between 10 – 21), directed by Louise Denison.

The show is a product of the hit 1980’s film, following a group of young hopefuls wanting to attend New York City High School for the Performing Arts, or PA as we get to know it later on. We follow the fortunes of a group of dancers, actors and musicians, the cream of the crop, from their auditions through to graduation, in the quest for one thing – fame.

The show concentrates on a selected few students, one being Carmen Diaz, played by a very confident Lydia Bradd. She does an amazing job of showcasing her dancing and acting abilities especially the vulnerability as we see Carmen on the downward spiral, seduced by the quick fix and drugs. Finn East as Joe Vegas delivers a strong comedic performance which had us all laughing. Other mentions must be given to Charlotte McCamley (Serena Katz), Amelia Cook (Mabel Washington), Luke Wilby (Nick Plazza) and Sam Rippon (Schlomo Metzenbaum) who are all integral to the story and showed different strengths in their performances.

There is another young man who I have not as yet mentioned and that is Max Mulrenan as Tyrone Jackson. He had great stage presence and there was certainly something about him. Although he can sing, dance and act, I did think sometimes that he was not quite “powerful” enough, that was until I realised that he is only 14, so young. He has so much potenial and I would love to see him in 5 – 10 years time as he matures and can truly deliver that powerful performance which he has within him.

The extremely young cast are energetic and you could feel their enthusiasm straight from the get go, you could tell that they all so wanted to be there, setting the tone for the whole show. The live music was a treat and it was so welcoming to see the conductor loving his job so much.

Overall a great vibrant show and the cast deserve to have a full house in every performance they do, especially knowing that they had less than 2 weeks to put it together.


Edinburgh Fringe Diary Day Three

Day three was cold and wet and miserable.  So with no shows due until later, we decided to be cultural and see some of the city and went on a bus tour.  We chose City Sightseeing (www.city-sightseeing.com) with their distinctive red busses but there was plenty of choice for tours from the stop at the top of the High Street, by the Castle, where we got on.  It was informative and entertaining and we discovered that many many cafe’s were laying claim to where a certain author wrote about a certain boy wizard.

After getting flyered by the many who were out and about braving the elements we went for lunch.  Gordon’s Trattoria again (www.gordonstrattoria.com).  We had the most delicious lasagne – it was everything we thought it would be and more.  The garlic and rosemary focaccia and for the best dessert ever I had sticky toffee pudding and Jo had chocolate fudge cake.  They looked like a work of art and tasted like heaven.  The staff are friendly, the service amazing and the food sublime – you must, MUST visit Gordon’s and if you do – tell them fairypowered sent you.

More flyering and people watching before our first show of the day – a very funny tale of overcoming zombies by being northern in the Assembly.  Followed by a comedy psychic medium who might actually have turned out to be real.  Either way both were 5* shows and you can read the reviews on here and on facebook and twitter

Tom and Bunny Save the World https://fairypoweredproductions.com/tom-bunny-save-world-review/

Tom Binns is Ian D Montfort https://fairypoweredproductions.com/tom-binns-ian-d-montfort-review/

Tom Binns is Ian D Montfort Review

Edinburgh Fringe Festival

Assembly George Square – until 28 August.  Reviewed by Joanne Gordon


The third Ian Talk by Ian D Montfort (Tom Binns) is all about “proving there is no need to provide proof that his methods work by providing evidence that evidence does not matter” !

Stood barefoot and donned in his ying yang wolf top, Ian certainly looks the part. You enter the performance believing you are going to see someone take the proverbial out of the celebrity “psychics” we are all aware of . Heavily dependant on audience participation, Ian, with the help of his Indian spirit guide (Raj, a call centre worker from Mumbai) brings messages from the other side and surprisingly gets most of the personal information correct!

We see the spirit of Shakespeare (his first appearance at the fringe) correctly quote a passage from his works previously circled by a member of the audience, there is a visit from Churchill himself, guessing his quote written on a British fiver, proven to be him as he wasn’t around when these fivers were invented and a very impressive moment involving various wallet cards from the audience (including mine ) which left me in awe! Very funny throughout and the accuracy he delivers will have even the most cynical of us turned into believers!

He is either a comic genius or the seventh son of a seventh son, I cant decide!

Tom and Bunny Save the World Review

Edinburgh Fringe Festival

Assembly Box – until 28 August


A deadly virus has been unleashed upon the world and the only people who can save the day are geek Tom (Jamie Mawson) and free spirit Bunny (Robyn Grant).  There plan is to get to Yorkshire, to Leeds, to make sure Bunny’s family and pet dog Cliff are okay.

On their way there they pick up Vet Gareth (Luke Dunford) from a strange farm in Wales and the threesome end up at a research lab in Nottingham. Here they meet Kai (Rosie Raven) a mechanic who worked at Porton Down and heavily pregnant Pearl (Allie Monro) a Scientist trying to find a cure for the zombies now invading the land.

All the while they are being watched on CCTV from a bunker in Scotland by Mike (Jonny Holbek) who is Kai’s partner.

This is full of humour and some fantastic musical pieces, mostly played on guitar by Holbek.  There is a gritty and at points worrying story at it’s heart but the jokes compound the piece without turning serious silly.

I can’t give away the plot as you need to see the show for yourselves but being a Northern woman I was proud of this show

This is Fat Rascal Theatre’s second show at this years fringe (the other being Buzz the Musical at the Pleasance Courtyard), proving just how multi talented they are doing two totally different shows every day.  It’s a tight ensemble and they all work well together.  Another must see show from this fabulous company

Fringe Festival Day Two

Day two dawned brightly until the point we wanted to leave the hotel, then it started to pour it down with the special unique fringe festival rain.  We ran the gauntlet of the Royal Mile where only the brave and most determined were flyering and then took refuge in the pub to dry off and warm up.

Our first show, of a very many long show day, was downright hilarious and hopefully set the tone for the day with talent and professionalism.  And Tim Vine was in the audience (and laughing) so it must have been good.

We ventured into the Assembly Gardens for food – we are recommending “Pies” from the the Jarvis Pickle Kitchen (www.jarvispickle.com) and we especially recommend the sublime beetroot ketchup.  By now the sun was shining, people were smiling and we got to talk to a lovely man flyering for Time Machine and Austin’s Women who showed us some of his amazing art work.

Second show of the day was again a triumph, full of memories of girly nights out, putting the world to rights in what were much simpler times, our 2nd 5* show of the day.

The third show was unfortunately just a 1* show and if we could have escaped like the many around us were doing, then we would.  An hour of our life (was it really just an hour – it seemed so much longer) that we will never get back.

Time to fit in food, and as we dodged the late flyers on the mile we found Gordon’s Tratattoria (www.gordonstrattoria.com) where we can certainly recommend the pizza and salad and fabulous service.  We will be visiting there again – the lasagne looked immense.

Our spirits raised from the turgid, self indulgent drivel we had recently witnessed, we went off to the 4th show at the Just the Tonic Caves.  Star of this show was Jo, she was dragged up from the audience and ended up with quite a large and important role which saw her marrying an ancient Egyptian mummy.

And then last show of the day, we were tired, we were carolled in to a very long queue and so tight we had to make friends with the people beside us because we were becoming very intimate.  Due to lack of space and air we had a fainter – a sign that you need to schedule in time to eat and drink between shows – Health and Safety fairypowered style.  But the show was worth – it more funny that was human possible without even uttering a word and our last 5* of the day was awarded.

Lets hope Day 3 brings as much fun

Ivan Brackenbury and Friends https://fairypoweredproductions.com/ivan-brackenbury-friends-review/

2 Become 1 https://fairypoweredproductions.com/2-become-1-review-2/

Showstopper! https://fairypoweredproductions.com/showstopper-review/

Four Go Off On One https://fairypoweredproductions.com/four-go-off-one-review/

The Curse of the Mummy https://fairypoweredproductions.com/curse-mummy-review/

Tapeface https://fairypoweredproductions.com/tape-face-review/

Tape Face Review

Edinburgh Fringe Festival 

Pleasance Courtyard – until August 27th,  Reviewed by Jo Gordon


Tape Face is the curious non verbal act of Sam Wills, set in a crumbling, tatty backstage theatre room Tape Face is passing time before he heads onstage. Pulling out members of the audience to partake in often hilarious, pointless tasks with nothing but simple props, lighting and well chosen music filling the venue with raucous laughter as we see them dance, thrust and bull fight their way across the stage.

His eyes can scold them when they do not live up to his expectation in a way I’ve only ever seen my own annoyed Mother look at me before tonight’s show! One of the joys of this act is there is no language barrier, it’s good old fashioned, clean, physical comedy family entertainment for ages across the board.

A kohl eyed, silent man (the best kind in my opinion!) proved that sometimes it’s better to say nothing at all and I think I may have fallen in love a little with the gentle, funny and sweet bloke that is Face Tape .

I beg you to go see it, you will not be disappointed.

The Curse of the Mummy Review

Edinburgh Fringe Festival

Just the Tonic at the Caves – until 28 August.  Reviewed by Jo Gordon


The Last Chance Saloon boys are back proving they are not immature but grown-up sensible performers.

Archaeologist Montana Jones (Sam Dunham), an Egyptian Mummy (Jack Faires) and spectacularly camp Nazi (Jack Gogarty) are on an amazing quest that could end humanity as we know it!

With an array of 80’s hits, hilarious humour, a camel and the Mummy’s love interest will good conquer evil?

A laugh a minute show that leaves your sides aching and your cheeks sore with laughter. One to fit into your schedule and not to be missed .

Four Go Off On One Review

Edinburgh Fringe Festival

Wine Bar, Gilded Balloon, Teviot – until 28 August


Billed as a jolly good romp through childhood this just didn’t appeal to our inner child  The adventures of the well known (not famous) four set down on the South coast but not Dorset was supposed to be a parody.  

So many parts didn’t work, be it the stripping uncle – why??? Or the crab jokes from the narrators or any of the other bits that just didn’t work.

Why did they need to steal dogs when they were smuggling fish pies?  What was the point of the Fanny the maid? The liver casserole? And why didn’t we take the chance to escape like all the other people who were leaving around us?  Many questions and I doubt many answers.

But in the spirit of the fringe, this is only an hour (it did seems much longer) and if nothing else, it’s a sit down and a shelter from the rain – you however may enjoy it


Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2017

The Grand (Pleasance) – until 28 August.  Reviewed By Jessica Brady 


I have wanted to see Showstopper! for so long and today was the day I FINALLY got to see it and I was not disappointed in the slightest.

Showstopper! is 70 minute fully improvised musical that completely relies on the audience for the suggestions of what the show will be about. The location, musical theatre styles and title is the only information that the group of 6 actors (3 male, 3 female) are given and almost instantly are brought on stage and we are in the first musical number. Our particular show was set in a retirement home for royals and developed into a hilarious uprising of Prince Consort Phillip wanting to over through Queen Victoria from ruling the retirement home. He was encouraged to do so by a barbaric King who’s way of ruling was by killing people and building Cathedrals’. We also meet Queen Elizabeth I who ends up falling in love with the stuttering King George and the gin drinking Princess Anne. The battle field is the croquet ground but Queen Victoria is not a strong enough player and so enlists the help of Princess Anne and Queen Elizabeth I to teach her the ways!

The concept of Showstoppers is so clever and requires so much trust and creativity from its performers to make every show a success and with no chance to plan anything before they are thrust onto the stage. Each performer in this show is so highly skilled to be able to create such gripping story lines, alongside singing in harmonies and choreography on the spot for all the musical numbers. The Band who also accompany this show, improvise all the music so it adds that extra element of uncertainty where as an audience member, you have no idea where it’s going to end up but relish in the journey of finding out!

This show deserves all the success it has gained over the last few years as it has such an incredible bunch of performers who have unbelievable talent in being able to produce this quality! They all throw caution to the wind and commit to every decision that they make, no matter how bizarre or scary it may seem and it just works beautifully.

An all round outstanding, hilarious, insanely clever show that will have you wondering just how they do it! GO CATCH SHOWSTOPPER! At The Pleasance Grand 6pm for a wonderfully entertaining show!