More than 30 of the West End’s most talented performers will take to the stage for the special “one night only” performance in aid of The Make A Difference Trust, with direction by Stephen Whitson and musical direction by Dean Austin.
Cast members who are confirmed so far* include: Vivienne Acheampong, Simon Bailey, Paul Baker, Daniel Boys, Natalie Bush, James Charlton, Adam Colbeck Dunn, Michelle Crook, Fra Fee, Sarah French, Tom Gillies, Rachel Lea Gray, Victoria Hamilton-Barritt, Emma Hatton, Paul Hazel, Nick Hendrix, Graham Hoadly, Freddy Hutchins, Lauren Ingram, Kurt Kansley, Emma Kingston, Emma Lindars, Leon Lopez, Grace McKee, Matt McKenna, Ako Mitchell, Ursula Mohan, Katie Paine, Michael Pickering, Ella Marshall-Pinder, Kelly Price, Sophia Ragavelas, Grace Reynolds, Paul Riddiford, Joanna Riding, Oliver Saville, Adam Stafford, Alwyne Taylor, Izabella Urbanowicz, Miles Western, Emma Williams, Gary Wood, Matthew Wycliffe (*subject to availability; further names to be announced).
Elegies For Angels, Punks and Raging Queens is a song cycle with music by Janet Hood and lyrics and additional text by Bill Russell. The work features songs and monologues inspired by the NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt and Edgar Lee Masters’ Spoon River Anthology. Each of the monologues is written from the perspective of characters who have died from AIDS and the songs represent the feelings of friends and family members dealing with the loss.
The piece was developed in the late 1980s and was originally titled “The Quilt.” It was produced first at the Ohio Theatre in Soho in NYC in 1989, where the new title was adopted. In 1992, it was produced at the King’s Head Theatre in London, where it played for several months. In June 1993, the production was transferred to the Criterion Theatre in London’s West End.
Bill Russell has adapted the piece over the years and has kindly given the producers the permission to be the first people to produce this “new version for the 21st century”.
All profits will go The Make a Difference Trust. Originally founded as West End Cares in 1990 and later becoming Theatrecares, The Make A Difference Trust (www.madtrust.org.uk), raises funds for HIV and AIDS Projects that raise awareness and provide care, support and education in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Elegies For Angels, Punks and Raging Queens, produced by Leon Kay for First Light Theatre, in association with TheatreMAD, takes place on Sunday 31 May at 7.00pm (VIP reception from 6.00pm). Tickets, priced from £30-40 (£75 with VIP reception) are now on sale online*, by telephone*: 08448 471778 and in person at the Criterion Box Office (*booking fees may apply).