Nicholas Parsons and Simon Callow celebrate the great British musical

Nicolas Parsons

Two of this country’s great raconteurs are taking to the stage to sing the praises of The Great British Musical!

Nicholas Parsons and Simon Callow are hosting The Great British Musicals – In Concert at St James Theatre on July 4/5.

Celebrating the very best of British musicals, including works by Gilbert and Sullivan, Lionel Monckton, Vivien Ellis, Noel Coward, Ivor Novello, Lionel Bart, Leslie Bricusse and Andrew Lloyd Webber, the show runs for just three performances.

It will be narrated by BBC Radio 4 Just A Minute host, Nicholas Parsons on Friday and Saturday evenings and stage and screen legend Simon Callow for the Saturday matinee.

This is a not-to-be-missed opportunity to enjoy a glamorous night at St. James Theatre with Ross Leadbeater (formerly of Only Men Aloud) and The Novello Singers – a newly established eight-voice musical theatre ensemble.

Further special West End guests will be announced.

The Great British Musicals – in Concert also features a special First World War centenary tribute to Ivor Novello’s 1914 composition Keep the Home Fires Burning.

The Novello Singers include West End performers Rhidian Marc (Les Miserables), Annatt Bass (The Phantom of the Opera) Leigh Rhiannon Coggins,(Pirates of Penzance), Matthew Crowe (South Pacific), Jonathan Broad (West End Men), Lydia Jenkins (Iolanthe) and Victoria Humphreys (The Bakewell Bakeoff).

Simon Callow

Nicholas Parsons has worked in every branch of show business, including starring roles in the musicals Into the Woods, The Rocky Horror Show and Charlie Girl.

A serious actor and comedian, he has performed solo cabaret work and stand-up comedy around the world, including the Edinburgh Festival – where he has appeared for nine years presenting three different shows.

He became a household name in Britain as straight man to comedian Arthur Haynes in the early 1960s, topping the comedy ratings for ITV for 10 years.

He hosted the amazingly successful Sale of the Century for 14 years, and has hosted BBC Radio 4’s Just a Minute for 45 years. His starring roles in the West End include Boeing-Boeing, Say Who You Are, and Uproar in the House.

Simon Callow is an actor, author and director. He joined the National Theatre in 1979, where he created the role of Mozart in Peter Shaffer’s Amadeus.

He has appeared in many films and TV dramas, including A Room with a View, Four Weddings and a Funeral, Shakespeare in Love, Phantom of the Opera and Dr Who.

He directed Shirley Valentine in the West End and on Broadway, Single Spies at the NT and Carmen Jones at the Old Vic, as well as the film of The Ballad of the Sad Café.

His many one-man shows include Inside Wagner’s Head at the Royal Opera House, The Mystery of Charles Dickens, Being Shakespeare, and A Christmas Carol all in the West End.

He has written acclaimed biographies of Oscar Wilde, Orson Welles and Charles Laughton; his autobiographical book My Life in Pieces, won the Sheridan Morley Award.

His most recent book Charles Dickens and the Great Theatre of the World was published in 2012.

Leave a Reply