Why See Stephen Ward?
closed March 29th 2014.
Stephen Ward was a musical by Andrew Lloyd Webber, Don Black & Christopher Hampton. Based on one of the biggest political scandals of the 20th Century, the infamous Profumo affair and the man that took the blame.
With a budget of 2.5million pounds, Stephen Ward told the true story of the titular character; an osteopath with an impressive client list. By 1961, Ward's society lifestyle was well known and although his parties often hosted a mix of people, there was always 'a steady stream of pretty girls'. It was one of these girls, Christine Keeler, that got him into trouble. Through Ward, Keeler, a topless showgirl of just 19, met John Profumo, the distinguished Secretary of State for War in Harold Macmillan's Government. Their dalliance, however brief, was just the start of it; it was his friendship with the amorous Soviet spy Eugene Ivanov brought him the the attentions of a curious MI5...
Soon, this multi-layered web of intrigue unravelled with calamitous circumstances. Profumo, Keeler and Ward and everyone attached to them were dragged into a sex and spy scandal that was splashed across the front page, outraging middle England with it's immorality and costing everyone their reputations and in Stephen's Case, his life, after a trial that shook the country.
It's limited run was blamed on the poor ticket sales, possibly because of the difficulty of younger audiences to connect with the 50 year old scandal, but reviews were favourable, praising the performances and attention to the facts of Ward's life.
Previews from: 3 December 2013
Opening night: 19 December 2013
Cast and Creative
CastAlexander Hanson as Stephen Ward
Charlotte Spencer as Christine Keeler
Charlotte Blackledge as Mandy Rice-Davies
Anthony Calf as Lord Astor
Martin Callaghan as Peter Rachman
Daniel Flynn as John Profumo
Paul Kemble as Redmayne
Richard Coke-Thomas s Lucky Gordon
Julian Forsyth as Rawlinson
CreativeMusic by Andrew Lloyd Webber
Lyrics by Don Black
Book and lyrics by playwright Christopher Hampton
Directed by Richard Eyre
Designs by Rob Howell
Choreography by Stephen Mear
Lighting by Peter Mumford
Sound by Paul Groothuis
What we thought
Entertaining musical SYMPATHETIC
Great moments are dotted throughout
Marking 50 years since the Profumo Affair blazed across political memory and headlines, Stephen Ward: The Musical is the second such show focusing on the event.Read full review
What you thought
6 reviews, average rating: (3.8 Stars)
As some reviewers have already stated Stephen Ward is not your average... more
I found this new musical completely enthralling and beautifully paced.... more
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