Thekla » musical Tue, 15 Oct 2013 12:17:17 +0000 en-US hourly 1 The History Of London Palladium Tue, 16 Oct 2012 09:14:11 +0000 This is one of the many resources we have provided to give your time in London at the theatre that extra bit of shine.  Hopefully by absorbing the information here you will get a greater idea of theatre position in the city’s history, making your visit that bit more special by an appreciation of context.


The capital’s famous West End is a treasure trove of historical interest, and the theatres that stand there, like London Palladium, Lyceum Theatre, Apollo Victoria etc. have witnessed many important world events.  The show you are planning on seeing is part of this rich tapestry that has existed for many years, and so it is important to have a bit of understanding about it before you go.

Seating more than two thousand, the London Palladium is one of the most distinguished and prestigious of all of London’s theatres.  It was built in the early years of the 20th century by the architect Frank Matcham, as commissioned by Walter Gibbons.  It’s classical façade, complete with pediment, architrave and ornate Corinthian columns, is a remnant of an older building from the 1800’s, and offers a delightfully archaic touch to London’s busy modern streets.

In it’s early life it was primarily concerned with such thinks as variety performances as pantomimes. It is especially famous for being the home of the Royal Variety Performance, a variety show held yearly around the Christmas period that features some fantastic family entertainment, and is usually attended by the celebrities of the Royal family.

The theatre was re-energised under the management of Val Parnell with the presentation of big American names on the stage.  Such famous stars as Judy Garland, Bing Crosby, Bob Hope, Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra and Johnny Ray all appeared at this fantastic theatre.

In the seventies it also showed many live pop acts such as Slade and Marvin Gaye.

More recently it has been bought by Andrew Lloyd Webber’s company, and so has focused more on musical theatre as a result.  Since the early nineties the theatre has shown many wonderful musicals such as ‘Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat’, ‘Oliver!’, ‘Saturday Night Fever’, ‘The King and I’, ‘Chitty Chitty Bang Bang’, ‘Scrooge – The Musical’, ‘The Sound of Music’ and ‘Sister Act – The Musical’.

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Is CD packaging still cool in the Digital Age? Tue, 09 Oct 2012 13:16:24 +0000 The answer is: why ever not! Even if we are moving into a more digital age where all we do is download our favourite track instead of going to the shop, if there was interesting and bespoke CD packaging out there, then it would get the public’s attention once more.

The sales of Record Vinyls has boomed in the past couple of years because of the vintage revival and the notion of collecting record sleeves. The infamous Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band vinyl cover from the 60s has reportedly sold for over £72,000 so what is to stop new design covers following in their footsteps.

Creating a CD cover/packaging that stands out is a great way of getting your message across before your consumer even knows of the contents. You can express as much or as little as you like, the element of being unique is key.

You can opt for outrageous packaging that twists and turns or go for simplicity, the choice is always yours. If you think about some of the most famous brand products out there, they’re not necessarily the most aesthetically pleasing but they are memorable. Being memorable is what makes something sell.

Design concepts are changing all the time, and the ones that do they best, are always the ones that perceive the unexpected. A backwards opening case, a twist and fold to unlock, there’s lots of different creative and individual ways to promote your product through its packaging alone.

McDonalds did it with their Happy Meal as much as Nirvana did it with their naked baby, you could be the next design prototype for bringing CD purchases back on the up.


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We Will Rock You the musical Thu, 11 Aug 2011 13:36:08 +0000 We Will Rock You the musical is based off the songs sung by the popular band Queen and the musical was named after the bands number one hit We Will Rock You. This jukebox musical was written by Ben Elton, a famous British comedian with the support of Queen members Brian May and Roger Taylor. The musical was first produced in London, England by Queen, Phil McIntyre, and Tribeca Productions. It started playing in May of 2002 in the West End at the Dominion Theatre and became an instant hit in West End area. The musical in the last few years expanded their performances to other countries such as Ireland, Australia, Canada, Russia, Spain, Japan, South Africa, Zrich, Vienna, New Zealand, South Korea, Singapore, Bangkok, United States and Hong Kong. Each performance within the countries received successful reviews and positive critiques from the audience abroad.

The We Will Rock You plot is actually not based on the life and times of the band Queen. It is actually a story the takes place in the future, where music is outlawed and illegal. The story uses Queen’s songs and Ben Elton’s vision to help portray and tell the story in the musical. Gallileo Figero is the central plot in the musical, as he plays a young man detained for speaking his mind after his high school graduation. Another character named Scaramoosh, is a rebel girl who also loves to speak her mind and is also detained in the same jail as Gallileo. They two end up meeting each other and become friends and both wanted the same thing, to escape out of jail and run free. Both eventually get free and join a resistant group called the Bohemians, whose main goal is to fight the Killer Queen, who is the controller of Globalsoft. Globalsoft represents a company that want complete control over the youth and uses force to control any kids that do not obey their policies and types of music they should be listening too. In the end will Gallileo and his friends succeed in defeating the Killer Queen, or will she reign supreme?

Throughout the musical, the director has perfectly placed 32 of Queen’s songs, which gives way to a very entertaining play. The storyline combined with Queen’s awesome songs will keep you intrigue from the start to the end. This is one of those musicals that you must see and will most definitely enjoy, especially for the diehard Queen fans as they get to hear all their fan favorite songs during the play.

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Joseph, the Musical Thu, 11 Aug 2011 13:35:40 +0000 Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat is a Biblical story-based musical by Andrew Lloyd Webber. The musical story is narrated from the Book of Genesis and describes the tale of Joseph with his brothers and his father, Jacob. Tim Rice wrote the lyrics for the musical. Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat was the first public musical performance of Webber and Rice.

Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice actually prepared the musical for performing in Colet Court. They presented the musical in March 1968 at the School’s Easter Concert. Lloyd’s father, William, enjoyed the show and was a composer also. He arranged for the second and revised performance of the musical at Westminister Central Hall later that year. The show gained good reviews from the audience and they planned to expand the musical. In 1969, Decca Records recorded the musical scores first as a concept album. Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat made its first appearance in America at Cathedral College, New York in 1971. The opera made a deep impact among the school?s opera groups for its family and religion friendly influences.

There are two acts in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. The musical has very few dialogue sequences and in a full performance, about 24 musical scores are performed. A Lady starts the musical by narrating a dream inspiring the viewers to dream of Joseph. Joseph is the most beloved by his Father among his twelve sons. Joseph?s colorful coat is the sign of his Father?s affection and his brothers are jealous of him. They sell Joseph to Potiphar as a slave and inform their father of the false news of Joseph?s death. Potiphar then brings Joseph to Egypt, where he sends Joseph to jail after a misconception causes him to accuse Joseph of trying to start an affair with his wife. In jail, Joseph helps out his two fellow cellmates and later, one of the cellmates introduces him to Pharaoh. Joseph becomes the most powerful figure in Egypt (after Pharaoh, of course) and, after several years, he meets his brothers again during a famine. Joseph?s brothers plead their guilt and Joseph realizes their grief. The musical ends with a happy reunion of Joseph with his father.

The powerful tragic storyline with the collaboration of magnificent musical numbers make it a very popular opera. It has received several nominations for Tony Awards and Oliver Awards for Best Musical, Best Revival of Musical, and others. According to Lloyds?s Production group, the musical has been staged more than 20,000 times under different producers including schools, colleges, and amateur theatre groups.

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Grease: The Musical Thu, 11 Aug 2011 13:34:34 +0000 ‘Grease: The Musical’ was originally known as ‘Grease Lightning’ ,performed in the city of Chicago in the Lincoln Park neighborhood. A group of producers and playwrights saw the show in Lincoln Park and suggested that the play be turned into an off broadway musical production as opposed to the less musical current rendition. The musical version was finished rehearsing in early 1972 and the first performance opened Off Broadway in the borough of Manhattan in February of that year. The play was a wild success, and would end up being nominated for 7 Tony awards and winning in three different categories. Grease ended up winning the Tony’s for Outstanding Choreography, awarded to Patricia Birch. Grease also took home a Theater World Award, which was given to Adrienne Barbeau. Carrie Robbins won the Tony Award for Outstanding costume design that year as well.

Grease the Musical ran for 8 years, from early 1972 to early 1980. The show was relatively long lived compared to many musical contemporaries of the time. Grease the Musical ended after being performed 3,388 times. Some of the cast of the original iteration of Grease included Carole Demas playing Sandy. Richard Gere studied at the production for a number of roles including Danny Zuko.

There are a number of memorable songs during the movie that have seeped into popular culture and the soundtrack for the musical Grease was a massive bestseller, reaching number one on the charts. ‘We Go Together’ which is performed in Act II is one of the more popular songs in the musical.

Grease takes place at Rudell High School right before the end of summer vacation. There are three rival factions at the school at odds with each other, the Greasers are the tough kids while their preppier enemies the Burger Palace Boys are affiliated with the Pink Ladies, a girl faction. The play is set in the late 50′s and it is a love story at and around Rudell High School, which is located in California. The kids of Rudell spend lots of time partying and being generally rebellious around town and at the beach, as well as at school. Things go awry throughout the play and it is filled with rumbles and dancing numbers, The story is of two people from two different worlds falling in love and the way things change when you love a person from the ‘other’ side.

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Chicago the Musical Thu, 11 Aug 2011 13:33:26 +0000 If you are traveling and get the chance to see a musical, ‘Chicago’ is a great one to pick. It is set in the roaring 20′s and follows the murder trials of Velma Kelly and Roxie Hart. The musical is a satire of the corruption criminal justice system and the fact that often criminals get a ‘celebrity’ status during and sometimes after their trials. The satire adds humor to the musical.

At the beginning of the musical, Velma Kelly is a vaudeville star who murders her husband and sister after she finds them in bed. A chorus girl, Roxie Hart, also commits a murder, of her lover. At first, Roxie tries to convince her dimwitted husband, Amos, that she was the victim of a robbery, but eventually the law catches up with her and she is thrown in jail.

Roxie is desperate for some limelight, and she does everything she can to make her murder trial get more headlines than Velma’s. Roxie proves that she is ruthless by stealing away Velma’s lawyer, Billy Flynn. Roxie gets high on the fame that her high profile case gets her and even fakes a pregnancy to keep her name in the papers. The climax of the musical is the trial, which has a fairly predictable ending.

Because this play is a musical there are many numbers, all in the style of the time period. The music helps move the story along, and giving rise to some great dance numbers. While you could watch the movie version of ‘Chicago’ there is nothing like watching a musical live. There is an energy that you can get anywhere except for live theater.

‘Chicago’ was originally on Broadway in the late 1970′s but has be revived several times to put it back on Broadway. There are also touring companies that will put on this musical in big cities across the country. These touring shows are often almost as good as the show you would see on Broadway, so it can be a good way to see this musical if it comes close to your town.

The musical ‘Chicago’ has intrigue, interesting characters, grand musical numbers all set in the Prohibition era of the 1920′s. If you are traveling to a city that has this play running, it is a good one to go see. There is nothing else like the experience of seeing a grand musical live.

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Following a Dream: Billy Elliot the musical Thu, 11 Aug 2011 13:32:48 +0000 Billy Elliot is a great story about doing what you love despite the stigmas surrounding it. It is an enchanting story that will capture the heart and imagination of audiences of all appropriate ages. Currently, Billy Elliot the musical is playing in various cities around the country and world. Enjoy a unique story about growing up, following your dreams, and putting your heart into something great.
Billy Elliot is a charming story about a young boy growing up in a small English town. The town is the picture of traditional and rural life where boys and girls are expected to act a specific way and differences are squashed and discouraged at a young age. Amid the traditional towns people is Billy Elliot, a young boy who is supposed to be taking a boxing class, but instead stumbles into a dance class by accident. He quickly learns that he is exceptionally talented in ballet and other forms of dance. His conservative family and friends quickly make becoming a great dancer very difficult for Billy and he is ridiculed, but he refuses to give up. But Billy’s dancing is not the only major conflict in the story. Billy’s story is set against one of England’s largest strikes in its history, the 1980′s coal miners’ strike.

This confrontation brings great violence to Billy’s story, but it adds a very realistic and historical element to what would otherwise be an overly idealistic musical and story. Billy’s dance class offers him a great place to get away from the stark reality that he lives in. Eventually, his dancing will change his life as well as those around him, possibly including yourself. While Billy Elliot is about everyday life, it is also about how one boy who considers himself to be insignificant can change the lives of those around him.
Billy Elliot is a touching story that is appropriate for children eight years and older as well as adults. The show recommends that parents not bring any children eight years and under to the show as it has several violent scenes between protesting miners and police forces. Billy Elliot the musical is playing in cities around the country and the world and is a Tony award winning musical. The actors, particularly the young boy playing Billy Elliot, are incredibly talented people that will make any crowd cheer with joy. To see a unique and entertaining musical, book your tickets now.

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