Welcome back to Access London everyone, thank you for your continued support for disability access and awareness in the capital.
Today's post is the second and last in our two-part series on the musical Love Never Dies. To see the first part from yesterday which includes an interview with cast member Daniel Gourlay, please scroll down.
Love Never Dies is showing at The Adelphi theatre on The Strand and is currently booking into 2012. There are performances Monday-Saturday evenings at 7.30 and matinee performances on a Wednesday and Saturday at 2.30pm.
The music in this show is spectacular and shows Andrew Lloyd Webber on top form. There are some amazing lyrics and big numbers including, Till I hear You Sing (Phantom), Beneath a Moonless Sky (Phantom & Christine) and of course the title song, Love Never Dies (Christine).
The sets are quite literally 'Phantastic' with a glass carriage, beautifully crafted balcony set and all the wonders that the audience experiences in the Phantom's domain.
The three leads, Ramin Karimloo (Phantom), Celia Graham (Christine), David Thaxton (Raoul) are supported supperbly by the likes of Liz Robertson (Madame Giry), Haley Flaherty (Meg Giry) and some wonderful young actors who share the role of Christine's son Gustave. There is also a fabulous ensemble who really bring numbers such as those on Pier 69, Heaven By The Sea, Bathing Beauty and the dramatic Phantasma scenes alive.
Access London has been lucky enough to talk with a couple of the ensemble members. Today's interview is with Kieran Brown who is also the understudy for Raoul in the show. Here's what he had to say...
AL: I can imagine Andrew Lloyd Webber's musicals being extremely popular for actors wanting to be a part of them. What was the auditioning process like for you?
KB: For me it was rather unusual! I was pulled in at the last stage of auditions, having been out of the country working on A Christman Carol in Vienna when casting started. So after singing half a song to the production team, was given some material to look at and return within a day or 2 later. I learnt it inside out, went back in, did the suff once through and that was it! I did have to attend a dance call even though my track in the show doesn't require it, just to show that I CAN move (just), where I first met 2 of my fellow cast members, Mira and Vanessa. It was lovely to see them on day 1. All in all, I had it pretty easy re this job as far as auditioning goes. The hardest thing was the wait to hear if I got the job! I got the call 3 days before rehearsals started - there had been a mix up at the office and they thought they had rung me the week before and were waiting on my answer. By luck I had contacted our wonderful choreographer and he sorted it out within minutes.
AL: You have been part of many fantastic shows and performances, why Love Never Dies?
KB: Honest answer? It's a job! It is however a job I LOVE! I wanted to be in this show since it opened. It's still a bit weird actually. I told my agent months before that the one show I wanted to be in in town was LND and here I am. I auditioned for the original cast but didn't even get past round one so....
AL: The energy and chemistry is fantastic to watch as an audience member. What is it like to be part of such a cast?
KB: We have just the BEST team of people in the show. We have so much fun together and trust each other implicitly. Just watching performers like Ramin or Tam, Celia, David or Liz Robertson from the wings still takes my breath away. I'm particularly proud of and delighted to be working with Haley Flaherty who plays Meg. I think she is simply wonderful in the role and we knew each other as kids - we went to the same children's theatre school but hadn't seen each other for years! We have a strong ensemble too - I love watching the Only For You opening number from offstage and am in awe at how bloody good our dancers and accros are. I wish I could move like that!
AL: Just as with the original Phantom of the Opera, Love Never Dies has many technical elements in it. Do you have a tale to tell of something going wrong in a performance?
KB: Not really because as well as having the best team onstage we also have the best technical crew who know exactly what they are doing. Everyone from crew to wardrobe, wigs and make-up do their job brilliantly. We did once have a show stop because poor Haley got stuck in the balloon before Bathing Beauty. It meant that the audience had to wait a few mins so that the crew could get her safely down and our wonderful dance captain had to VERY quickly restart the number without it as most of the ensemble enter through it from substage. Everyone took it in their stride! Haley was hilarious though - people kept shouting up to her to make sure she was ok and she was more concerned as she had a friend in from home!
AL: You have performed a fair number of times in Vienna. What are the differences between performing there and on the West End stage?
KB: Well the budget for a start! The English language theatres that I have worked in in Vienna - where I lived for 6 years were generally much smaller - The Adelphi seats something like 1500 whereas the theatre I did A Christmas Carol in was about 100! And nothing quite matches the prestige of a West End show although I did love working in Vienna. I did some wonderful shows with some great actors and directors so....It's great to be home though!
AL: I understand you have directed several projects. Do you have any plans to do so again?
KB: I would love to do more directing, yes, but it's not a priority at the moment. I think eventually I will give up performing but it's still my first love. I miss the control though!
AL: If you could play any role(s) in musical theatre, what would it/they be?
KB: Well PHANTOM of course, in both shows, would literally be a dream come true for me (but unlikely). I have gotten used to the fact that I'm now too old for Marius but maybe JVJ or Javert one day! Joe Gillis in Sunset Boulevard is on my list as is Raoul in Phantom (though I don't think I have the matinee idol looks needed for that!). Krolock in Tanz Der Vampire or Kaiser Franz Joseph in Elisabeth (if my German was better). Basically I just wanna be a leading man! - That should be a song! If I ever get to play any of these, I'll let you know.
Access London would like to offer a huge Thank You to Kieran for taking part and answering the questions. To keep up to date with what Kieran is doing and his future projects and performances, check out his website at www.KieranBrown.com
To book access tickets to see Kieran and the rest of the cast in Love Never Dies, please call: 08444 124 648. For all other Love Never Dies tickets, please contact: 0870 264 3333.
This ends Access London's posts on the Love Never Dies series. Please visit again soon as there will be posts on another of Andrew Lloyd Webber's shows, The Wizard of Oz and also The London Eye, Tate Britain and Thames River Cruises.