Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 19 April 2014

Profumo musical set for West End

Andrew Lloyd Webber's new musical opens at London's Aldwych Theatre in December

Andrew Lloyd Webber's musical about one of the key figures in the Profumo affair opens in the West End later this year - half a century after the scandal rocked the nation.

Stephen Ward - the story of one of the men who had a pivotal role in the story - will be directed by former National Theatre boss Richard Eyre, with music by Lloyd Webber and a script and songs by playwright Christopher Hampton and lyricist Don Black.

This year is the 50th anniversary of the episode which led to the downfall of the then secretary of state for war, John Profumo.

The story of his 1963 affair with showgirl Christine Keeler was chronicled in the 1989 film Scandal and starred Joanne Whalley as Keeler, Sir Ian McKellen as Profumo and John Hurt as Ward, a society figure who introduced the pair at a party at Cliveden and was central to the tale.

In the fallout from the affair, he faced charges of living off immoral earnings but died as a result of an overdose of sleeping tablets. Ward was found guilty, although he was dead before sentencing.

The production opens at the Aldwych Theatre in December and is currently booking to March 1, 2014.

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