Blood Brothers will return later this year with Lyn Paul as ‘the definitive Mrs Johnstone’.
“I am beyond thrilled to be returning to BLOOD BROTHERS in this iconic role. I’m honoured to have been given the opportunity to undertake this “Farewell Tour” by my good friend, Bill Kenwright. It’s such a privilege to be able to play Mrs Johnstone one final time” – Lyn Paul
Bill Kenwright’s critic adored production of the international smash hit musical Blood Brothers returns this summer with a three-week season at Cork Opera House from the 5th of August before embarking on a UK tour.
Described by The Manchester Evening News as ‘The definitive Mrs Johnstone’ Lyn Paul returns to the iconic role for the final time. Having first played her in 1997 and on numerous tours, Lyn played Mrs Johnstone in the final West End performances at the Phoenix Theatre in 2012.
She has also starred in the UK tour of Cabaret in 2013 as Fraulein Schneider, in Boy George’s musical Taboo and in Footloose – the Musical. Lyn’s early career encompasses a spell as a background supporting artist on ATV’s Crossroads before she rose to international fame in the early 1970s as a member of the New Seekers.
She was the featured vocalist on their 1972 Eurovision Song Contest entry, ‘Beg, Steal or Borrow’ and lead vocalist on the 1974 number-one hit ‘You Won’t Find Another Fool Like Me’. The group’s biggest hit was ‘I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing’, adapted from an advertising jingle for Coca-Cola, which sold over 20 million copies and remains one of the 100 best-selling singles in the UK.
Blood Brothers, written by award-winning playwright Willy Russell, has triumphed across the Globe. Scooping up no fewer than four awards for Best Musical in London and seven Tony Award nominations on Broadway, Blood Brothers is simply ‘Unmissable and unbeatable’ as noted by The Spectator. This epic tale of Liverpool life started as a play, performed at a Liverpool comprehensive school in 1981 before opening at the Liverpool Playhouse in 1983, later becoming one of only three musicals to surpass 10,000 performances in London’s West End.
Set to a memorable score including A Bright New Day, Marilyn Monroe and the emotionally charged hit Tell Me It’s Not True, the production tells the moving story of twin boys separated at birth, only to be reunited by a twist of fate and a mother’s haunting secret.
When Mrs Johnstone, a young mother, is deserted by her husband and left to her own devices to provide for seven hungry children she takes a job as a housekeeper in order to make ends meet. It is not long before her brittle world crashes around her when she discovers herself to be pregnant yet again – this time with twins! In a moment of weakness and desperation, she enters a secret pact with her employer which leads inexorably to the show’s shattering climax.
Willy Russell is one of this country’s leading contemporary dramatists whose theatre credits include Educating Rita, Shirley Valentine, Breezeblock Park and Our Day Out. Educating Rita, originally commissioned by the Royal Shakespeare Company, enjoyed a two-year run in the West End and was made into a film starring Michael Caine and Julie Walters. Shirley Valentine also made the move from stage to screen in an enormously popular film starring Pauline Collins and Tom Conti.
Blood Brothers 2019 Tour Dates
Tuesday 6 August – Saturday 17 August, Cork Opera House, Box Office: +353 (21) – 427 0022. Website: www.corkoperahouse.ie
Tuesday 27 August – Saturday 31 August, Canterbury, The Marlowe, Box Office: 01227 787787. Website: www.marlowetheatre.com
Tuesday 3 September – Saturday 14 September, Liverpool Empire, Box Office: 0844 871 7615. Website: www.atgtickets.com/venues/liverpool-empire
Tuesday 17 September – Saturday 28 September, Cardiff, New Theatre , Box Office: 029 2087 8889. Website: www.newtheatrecardiff.co.uk
Monday 30 September – Saturday 12 October, Birmingham Hippodrome, Box Office: 0844 338 5000. Website: www.birminghamhippodrome.com
Monday 14 October – Saturday 19 October, Derby Theatre, Box Office: 01332 59 39 39. Website: www.derbytheatre.co.uk
Tuesday 22 October – Saturday 26 October, Hull New Theatre, Box Office: 01482 300306. Website: www.hulltheatres.co.uk
Monday 28 October – Saturday 2 November, Grand Opera House, York , Box Office: 0844 871 7615. Website: www.atgtickets.com/venues/grand-opera-house-york
Tuesday 5 November – Saturday 9 November, Crewe Lyceum, Box Office: 01270 368 242. Website: www.crewelyceum.co.uk
Tuesday 12 November – Saturday 16 November, Hastings, White Rock Theatre, Box Office: 01424 462 288. Website: www.whiterocktheatre.org.uk
Tuesday 19 November – Saturday 23 November, Dartford, Orchard Theatre, Box Office: 01322 220000. Website: www.orchardtheatre.co.uk