ALAN  HAWKSHAW

MUSIC COMPOSER & VISIONARY

WALL POSTER.jpg

A GIRL - HER DREAM - HER LOVe - DIVIDED BY A WALL

The Alan Hawkshaw Foundation in association with Alan Hawkshaw, David Soames and Paul Nicholas presents ACROSS THE WALL - an exciting new Musical, set 1 year before the Berlin Wall was to be pulled down, changing the face of Europe forever.

Written by IVOR NOVELLO AWARD winner Alan Hawkshaw and David Soames (writer of the Musicals TIME and A TALE OF TWO CITIES.)

ACROSS THE WALL was presented for one night only, as a World Premier Narrated Concert on the 21st September 2013 at The Bloomsbury Theatre, London.  

When the show is opens commercially, it will be performed by a 52 piece orchestra, a cast of about 20 singers, including 5 principal West End singer/actors including Paul Nicholas, John Owen-Jones, Celia Graham, James Graeme and Holly-Anna Lloyd. The work will be assisted by narration and a projection of images from the period. 

ACROSS THE WALL is directed by Paul Nicholas, a name well-known to British Theatre and TV audiences. Paul was also the Co-Producer on the Musicals GREASE and SATURDAY NIGHT FEVER in London.

Holly-Anna Lloyd and Jim Graeme

synopsis

The year is 1988 and Katja Meier is  young woman living in East Berlin, behind The Wall.  Her father Volker is Major in the Grepo Border Guard and he is responsible for stopping East Berliners escaping across the Wall over to West Berlin.   Katja sings in the bars and cafes of East Berlin but dreams of one day becoming an Opera Star.  Her father uses his influence and gets her an audition for the East Berlin Opera House and she is accepted into the company.   Katja confides in one of the company members that she believes the Wall should be torn down and is denounced by the Stasi.  She is subsequently dismissed from the Opera House for not joining the Communist Party.  Katja decides to escape across the Wall to West Berlin and freedom.  She is assisted by her boyfriend Andreas and his brother Peter but only one will escape, one will be imprisoned and one will die at the hands of the Major Volker Meier.

Writing words and music is a joyous pastime. But I know of no greater creative joy than to hear one’s songs performed live. I am indebted to Jim Graeme and Holly-Anna Hawkes for breathing spirit and life into this song of mine and Ben Glassberg’s LYSO orchestra for rendering my arrangement so well
— Alan Hawkshaw

THE INSPIRATION

When the Berlin Wall came down in 1989 Alan was determined to be a part of this momentous event in some small way and with his wife Christine, who was born in Germany, they boarded a flight with the intention of experiencing this global historic scene. They were not to be disappointed. Alan managed to procure a hammer and chisel and on arrival in Berlin went straight to the wall and began chipping away at it with many other westerners. They were nearly arrested by the West Berlin Police for damaging East German property!

It may have been the inspiration of seeing the Berlin Wall go down that inspired him to create this new west end musical ACROSS THE WALL or it may be the love of his German born wife Christine.  Since that day he has often considered writing about this event and so the musical was born and Alan was fortunate to be introduced to the right people at the right time.  The seed began to flourish, alongside others who supported the production along the way.

The joint production of ACROSS THE WALL the musical will therefore be performed as a concert, a performance of the vocal score, on September 21st 2013 at the Bloomsbury Theatre, London in aid of the Alan Hawkshaw Music Foundation at the Leeds College of Music. 

It is a heart wrenching story of the dangerous liaisons between family members who are caught up in the conflicts that surrounded the division of loved ones caught up in political turmoil.

Big Al has been a friend and a major musical force for as long as I can remember and he hasn’t peaked yet. I have heard some of the gems from his new musical theatre venture and as the great Al Jolson used to say - you ain’t heard nothing yet
— Don Black OBE

Celia Graham is outstanding.

Celia's London West End credits include Christine Daae in Phantom of the Opera, Cosette in Les Miserables, Maria in West Side Story , Young Phillis in Follies, and again, the starring role of Christine Daae in Andrew Lloyd Webber's sequel to Phantom of the Opera, Love Never Dies.

the workshops

We held auditions for the workshop of Across The Wall and I'm overjoyed to say we have John Addison and Jane Quinn on board for our week at the St James' Theatre. With Holly-Anna Lloyd and Jim Graeme involved plus Paul Nicholas it amounts to a very powerful cast. 

Workshop performances took place at the St James Theatre London on August 5th 2016.

The spectacular Celia Graham performing DIVA

The lovely Celia Graham. What a wonderful performance of a song I loved writing
— Alan Hawkshaw
John Owen-Jones and Celia Graham created the perfect chemistry.

John Owen-Jones and Celia Graham created the perfect chemistry.

John Owen-Jones is an award-winning and record-breaking West End and Broadway actor & singer - best known for his performances as Jean Valjean in Les Miserables and as The Phantom in The Phantom of the Opera.

It was a fantastic night in the theatre - a quality and engrossing piece of work set in of one of the most iconic periods of 20th century western history.

Sally and I - along with the rest of the audience - were blown away. The story and characters were immediately engaging and the themes of aspiration, love, beliefs and family loyalties were woven beautifully. I could go on forever about the wonder of last night but shall just say that it was one of the most joyous evenings I have ever spent in a theatre
— Tony Osoba (Actor)

Jim Graeme and Holly-Anna Lloyd

In the West End, Jim Graeme has appeared as the title character in The Phantom of the Opera, created the role of Boone in Whistle Down the Wind and portrayed Pontius Pilate in Jesus Christ Superstar.  Regionally, he appeared as Clyde Gabriel in the UK tour of The Witches of Eastwick and George Dillingham in the UK tour of Aspects of Love.

The ridiculously talented Holly-Anna Lloyd graduated from the Royal Academy of Music Postgraduate Musical Theatre course. During her studies Holly was awarded numerous music prizes including Welsh Musical Theatre Young Singer of the Year 2013 and the Kathleen Ferrier Society Bursary for Young Singers Award. A major new talent!

Probably the hardest song I had to write - this exchange between Katja (Holly-Anna Lloyd) and her nasty father, played elegantly by Jim Graeme
— Alan Hawkshaw

INVESTMENT IN THE PRODUCTION

Alan Hawkshaw and David Soames are currently seeking finance to perform this wonderful musical.  If you are interested in being a part of this unique production, further details of this investment opportunity can be obtained from Alan's agent, Amanda Street.

Alan Hawkshaw & David Soames have created a musical that with your help is destined for the West End with songs & a story that will live long in the memory
The sublime soprano Holly-Anna Lloyd and the incredible tenor Nathan Pacheco (whose first sacred songs album, Higher, which was released in February 2017 and was ranked #1 on Billboard for best classical and classical/crossover album).

The sublime soprano Holly-Anna Lloyd and the incredible tenor Nathan Pacheco (whose first sacred songs album, Higher, which was released in February 2017 and was ranked #1 on Billboard for best classical and classical/crossover album).

Paul Nicolas is our superb narrator and director, with the brilliant Holly Anna Lloyd performing.

This song we wrote for someone who’d lived in East Berlin behind the wall her entire life, captivated by the lights of West Berlin, knowing she can never go there.

Paul Nicholas is an English actor and singer who has had considerable success on stage, screen and in the pop charts.

His musical theatre career began with the leading role of Claude in Hair before winning the title role in the original London production of Jesus Christ Superstar. Followed by the part of Danny to Elaine Paige's Sandy in Grease.

It was while touring with Richard O'Brien in Hair in 1970 that he first heard songs from the yet to be produced Rocky Horror Show and made the first professional recording with O'Brien singing "That Ain't No Crime". On the B-side was a song entitled "Very 50s", where O'Brien introduces the characters Brad, Janet, and Dr. Scott (In 2005 Nicholas sent O'Brien a CD copy of the recordings with a view to releasing them as an historical record).

Thereafter Nicholas returned to the West End starring in Harold Fielding's revival of Charlie Girl with Cyd Charisse.  

A prolific and impressive career in musical theatre.

Copyright ©  2017 Alan Hawkshaw