23 Nov – 9 Mar 2017
Tickets: £25 – £57.50
For the same season as last year, I’m back at the adorable Menier Chocolate Factory again, this time for a true classic. Fiddler on the Roof is one of the best loved and most famous musicals there is: when it first appeared on Broadway, it ran for 8 years – almost five times as long as any musical before it! On a more personal level, my very first paid gig in London when I arrived to study at Guildhall was a production of this very musical. This time around will be a very different experience to that 2-week Am Dram version back then (including the fact that this version will be directed by Sir Trevor Nunn, and will star, for example, Judy Kuhn, the voice of Disney’s Pocahontas) but, six years on, I still have the pleasing sense of a full circle.
Menier Chocolate Factory
23 Nov – 9 Mar 2017
Tickets: £25 – £57.50
Two years ago, I was involved in a very special show about one of the most wonderful performers of the Broadway stage, Judy Garland. Then titled Through The Mill (a beautifully relevant quote from her hit song The Man That Got Away), I joined the company when the production upscaled(!) to the Southwark Playhouse. Last year, it transferred again to the Arts Theatre in Soho, which I sadly had to decline because of my tour.
But this June, the show is once again reincarnated for a single concert performance in the magnificent Hippodrome Casino in Leicester Square, under the apt title of Judy’s Back.
Boasting its biggest band yet, this show contains some corkers of Old Broadway, meaning I am happy. Playing the soaring, larger-than-life music of this era is a unique thrill. For me, it’s the timbre and straightforwardness of earlier jazz mixed with the energy and expanse of modern show tunes that really makes the style special. Really though, I live for just the last few bars of Almost Like Being In Love.
Judy’s Back is on at the Hippodrome Casino on Friday 22 June, 8pm.
It’s showtime once again, and this one a bit closer to home than the last (literally, I mean – I can’t say I have too many roots in circus). Home, sweet home, at the beautiful Menier Chocolate Factory in Southwark for three months – it’s a dream job. And ok, it’s not pure circus, just a musical about one, but I’ve seen some pretty amazing stunts nonetheless. I’m told that there’s fire-eating, and a woman gets thrown accross the stage!! Alas, my job sounds dull compared to the capricosities and funambulosities going on around me, but I do get to whip out my dusty cornet for a couple of numbers…it’s the little things for me.
So the musical is the great Cy Coleman’s Barnum, named after the 19th Century impressario of the same name. Anyone who’s seen a bus recently may have noted that the soon-to-be-released film The Greatest Showman tells the same story. Having been written by Mr Coleman, naturally the music is great, which is, as we all know, the most important thing. The second most important thing is this: when do I get a go on the tightrope?!
Menier Chocolate Factory
25 Nov – 3 Mar 2017
Tickets: £25 – £57.50
The trailer for my tour of Wonderland is finally out! Check out the YouTube video below. After twelve weeks, the show is still just as much fun to play – here's to the next eighteen!
2017 is easy. For two thirds of it, I have one job. Of course, I’ll still be doing everything else that I normally do, but until August, my time will largely be spent touring the UK and Ireland with Frank Wildhorn’s new musical Wonderland. Starring British musical theatre’s current queen of the stage Kerry Ellis, it will be the UK and European premiere of this musical adaptation of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland.
Wonderland is my second tour to date, and much longer than my first one a couple of years ago. I’m very excited to be performing music by such a well-known composer as Frank Wildhorn, and it truly is a great score for both orchestra and audience. We’ll be coming to a theatre near you with venues including Edinburgh, York, Bromley, Belfast, Manchester, Wimbledon, Bristol, Liverpool, Dublin, Glasgow and Richmond.
20 Jan – 19 Aug 2017
The keenest of my followers may be aware that I am an occasional singer. Despite being brought up on musical theatre, I made a definite, potentially deliberate move to the classical side of things when I started at Wells Cathedral School at 16. I stuck at it for the following six years, and it wasn’t until the end of my time at Guildhall that I found myself branching out again.
This return to treading the boards is beginning with an industry showcase at the London Theatre Workshop’s new home in Leadenhall Market, where I will be performing a couple of songs from Ray Rackham's new (so new it’s only half-written!) musical Therapy. The showcase is wonderfully titled The Next Ten Minutes, in which there will be featured ten (roughly) minutes from each of six pieces that LTW plan to produce next year. Could this be an anomaly of my career or something much more significant? Only time will tell.
My degree is over. My final recital, a month ago today, really was the highlight of my four years at the Guildhall School, as it was everything I had planned it to be – a showcase of who I am as a musician. It had some natural trumpet, in Bach's second Brandenburg Concerto (without a doubt the best piece of baroque trumpet music in existence); I got to play the flugelhorn and exercise my choral roots in a rendition of Gammal Fäbodpsalm från Dalarna for flugelhorn and choir (though I did give up on the arranging side of things and persuaded a dear friend to do that bit for me); and I managed to fit a substantial bit of musical theatre in too – 76 songs in total – with my new invention of the musical theatre trumpet concerto!
Eternal thanks to my composer, Sam, my arranger, Charlie, the 30 musicians who played in the recital (it was meant to be 28, but following a very-last-minute illness, I had to replace a reed tripler with three separate musicians – I prefer a round number anyway), and of course, everyone who came to watch! The rest of you, check out the video which is now up on YouTube for your unlimited enjoyment.
The summer of 2016 is just how I like it – musicals, musicals, musicals! Or, at least, musical musical. Think of it as a double bill, except with a complete change of cast, production company and all but one of the band. Ok, so I'm playing for two shows back to back in the same theatre this summer, that's the gist. They are two very exciting shows, however, and for different reasons.
The first, for four weeks only, is the transfer of the critically acclaimed Through The Mill, which began its happy life at the London Theatre Workshop last Christmas. It depicts the life story of my all-time favourite singer, Judy Garland, this time around with a new script, reimagined production and, most importantly, a bigger band.
The second, running throughout August and into September, is a real groundbreaker. Ever heard of Rogers and Hammerstein? Ever seen their show Allegro (Sondheim's favourite)? Probably not, because it has never been performed in Europe...until now! The historic production is headed by a cast of 16, plus 8-piece band. See it.
Through The Mill
6 - 30 July 2016
Tickets: £20, £16, £12
Allegro (European Premiere)
5 August - 10 September 2016
Tickets: £25, £20, £14
Jerry Springer The Opera is one of the most groundbreaking and talked about musicals in the world of modern musical theatre. Turning heads since 2001, the show's latest production this month at Stockwell's LOST Theatre promises to do no different.
Music for the theatre is delightfully erratic to play. Genres rarely stick around for more than one song at a time, but Jerry Springer really takes the biscuit on this one. Three bars of classical nonchalance, a line of big band followed quickly by some soft shoe; a taste of baroque style piccolo trumpet, then straight into a heavy metal number – the brain frazzles but that's what makes for a brilliant score to play. That musical capriciousness is why shows are the best of all trumpet jobs.
16 – 19 March 2016
7:30pm (with 2pm matinee on 19th)
Tickets: £18, £15
Following the success of last year‘s inaugural Playing Our Part event, stars of the West End return to Cadogan Hall for an evening of musical theatre and comedy, for which Tom is delighted to be playing in the orchestra for. The concert will be conducted by Alex Parker and will feature a line-up of leading West End vocalists including Simon Bailey, Gina Beck, Louise Dearman, Killian Donnelly, Wendy Ferguson, Chloe Hart, Chris Howell, Adam Linstead, Laura Jane Matthewson, Jamie Muscato, Nadim Naaman, Steph Parry, Laura Pitt-Pulford, Jeremy Secomb and Laura Tebbutt. Below, you can watch some of the cast interviewed about the concert and some clips from the rehearsal.
Playing Our Part
Sunday 1 March, 6pm
Tickets: £50, £40, £30, £20