With The Bodyguard shacked up at the Adelphi Theatre, The Commitments rocking the Palace and Mamma Mia! serving up sequins and nostalgia nightly at the Novello, jukebox musicals have taken the West End by storm. This month, our own Piccadilly Theatre was proud to welcome the transfer of the smash hit Jersey Boys. A jukebox musical with a twist, it shuns fiction and tells the true life story of Big Girls Don't Cry hit-makers Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons.
But why stop there? Here are ten artists who deserve a crack at West End glory, and some plot tips while we're at it. You're welcome, future Olivier winners. Give us a nod in your acceptance speech (and some cold hard cash, if you like).
Beat Connection: a choreography-driven piece about the trials and tribulations of young artists living in New York. Somebody get Kate Prince on the phone, like, now.
Back in November 2011 it was reported that Heroes: The Musical - the story of Space Oddity's Major Tom set to the
songs of the Thin White Duke - would premiere at London's Indig02 in March
2012. This was news to his spokesman, however, who denied that there were any
negotiations pending for a Bowie musical. Two years later and no such
performance has surfaced, but with the success of the V&A's David Bowie Is... exhibition and his Best Male Solo Artist triumph at the Brit Awards, perhaps now is the time to get that rumour mill
A coming-of-age story entitled Breakaway. A female protagonist with a troubled family life (Because of You) strikes out on her own
to chase an unspecified dream. She gets distracted by a love interest who does
her wrong and gets kicked to the curb (Since U Been Gone). She has good times, bad times, learns some lessons and sings
the title track towards the end of the second act. The big finale number is My Life Would Suck Without You as she
reunites with her now reformed lover. It's a bit like Coyote Ugly but with less
John Goodman. This thing is writing itself.
YouTube session of Queen Kate's music videos reveals a keen interest in amateur
dramatics (Cloudbusting, anyone?) so
a stage show seems the next logical step. And if there's a more musical
theatre-ready song than There Goes a Tenner I'm yet to hear it.
From Stay to I Wanna Be The Only One, Eternal have a great book of songs. Personally I'd like them to take a leaf out of the Jersey Boys book and document the ups and downs and with-or-without-Louise-Redknapps of their 90s pop glory days. On opening night, Esther, Vernie, Kéllé and Louise reunite on stage during the curtain call, just in time for the next series of The Big Reunion.
Pet Shop Boys
The Divine Comedy
A postmodern piece comprising of vignettes, each focussing on a different passenger on one National Express coach. There's the woman fleeing her lover having robbed him blind (Something For The Weekend). The disillusioned tabloid journalist covering the latest political scandal (Generation Sex). And the shy driver, who loves the jolly hostess, and maybe by the final curtain he'll have told her (Everybody Knows (Except You)).
From Bubblegum-Pop-Princess to Edgy-Rock-Star-Botherer to Showgirl-Cancer-Survivor to Aphrodite, the life of Australia's pint-sized popstrel is crying out for a disco-powered stage adaptation. But I'm only on board if the stage lights up during Spinning Around.