Blood Brothers rose from the ashes to secure its place in the West End history books, courtesy of The Phoenix Theatre. But having enjoyed 24 years as one of the West End's best loved and longest running musicals, the 'story of the Johnstone Twins' is set to say farewell.
From today, Monday 29 October, Blood Brothers legends Lyn Paul, Warwick Evans, Mark Hutchinson, Jan Graveson and Sean Jones will rejoin the company for the final two weeks at The Phoenix Theatre, which will end its current London run on Saturday 10 November.
Blood Brothers' journey started as a school play, performed by a Liverpool comprehensive school in 1981. The musical opened at The Liverpool Playhouse in 1983 and transferred to London's Lyric theatre for a short run. It was then taken on by producer Bill Kenwright who opened a new production at the Albery Theatre after a two year tour to great acclaim, transferring it to the larger Phoenix Theatre Three years later. The production also enjoyed success on Broadway and across America.
Original cast member Warwick Evans returns as 'The Narrator', and is joined by Mark Hutchinson and Jan Graveson, who accompanied Warwick in London and co-starred with him on Broadway. Lyn Paul, one of the show's longest serving and favourite leading ladies, made her debut over sixteen years ago as 'Mrs Johnston' and returns for the last two weeks. They are joined by Sean Jones, as 'Micky' who has performed in Blood Brothers more than any of the aforementioned... though he is not quite as prolific as one of the current actors, Alex Harland, who has played 'The Postman' over 4,000 times!
Bill Kenwright's production of Willy Russell's tale of twins separated at birth, who are and later reunited by a twist of fate, will have played over 10,000 performances in London, making it one of only three musical to have achieved this length of run in the West End. Hailed as one of the greatest musicals of all time, Blood Brothers has triumphed across the globe, scooping up no less than four Best Musical awards in London and seven Tony Award nominations on Broadway. It has been affectionately christened the Standing Ovation Musical, as inevitably it "brings the audience cheering to its feet and roaring its approval" Jack Tinker, Daily Mail.
Blood Brothers will continue to play all around the UK into 2013 and beyond. A spokesperson for Bill Kenwright Ltd said "This is the end of a chapter, but by no means the end of Blood Brothers."
The cast also includes Kevin Pallister as 'Mr Lyons', Michael Southern as 'Sammy', Matt Slack as 'Policeman/Teacher', Joanne Dalladay as 'Donna-Marie/Miss Jones', ' Ashley Morgan as 'Brenda', Craig Anthony-Kelly as 'The Neighour' and Simon Turner as 'Perkins'.