Drawing: Jason Manford, Carley Stenson and Rebecca Lock in Curtains

Autographd drawing of Jason Manford, Carley Stenson and Rebecca Lock in Curtains at Wyndham's Theatre on London's West End

Kander and Ebb’s charming musical mystery comedy caper CURTAINS opened on Broadway at the Al Hirschfield Theatre in the spring of 2007 starring David Hyde Pierce as Lieutenant Frank Cioffi. Described as the ‘fun companion’ to the duos CHICAGO and CABARET, this classic whodunnit was nominated for eight Tony Awards with David winning for Leading Actor in a Musical.

The UK production, featuring comedian-singer Jason Manford in the lead role, premiered at Bromley’s Churchill Theatre last year, beginning a nationwide tour that included a belated but brief, unexpected five-week festive season filler at the Wyndham’s Theatre in London’s West End, due to the early closing of THE MAN IN THE WHITE SUITE.

Set in Boston in the 1950’s, the Broadway-bound musical ROBBIN’ HOOD OF THE OLD WEST is flopping, when its untalented star, Jessica Crenshaw is murdered during her opening night curtain call. Homicide cop and show tune-obsessed Frank is brought in to solve the case. Jason was joined by Carley Stenson as the show’s composer Georgina Hendricks, who replaces Jessica as the leading lady and Rebecca Lock as the brassy co-producer Carmen Bernstein.

The continuing UK tour was cancelled last month during its run at the Haymarket Theatre in Leicester due to the coronavirus pandemic. A recorded version streamed last week with profits going to the Funds For Freelancers charity.

Jason, Carley and Rebecca signed my montage sketch at the Wyndham’s Stage door in early January.

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The BBC reported:
“We are only four months in, but it’s already been a dark, dark 2016”

“Enough, 2016” and a more vulgar alternative are phrases people are uttering.

It now seems rare for a week to pass without a significant celebrity death being reported.

It’s a jump from only five between January and late March 2012 to a staggering 24 in the same period this year.

Drawing: David Hyde Pierce in Curtains on Broadway

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David Hyde Pierce is known for playing the psychiatrist Dr Niles Crane on the hit NBC sitcom Frasier, winning four Emmys for the role.

In August and September 2006, he starred as Lieutenant Frank Cioffi in Curtains, staged at the Ahmanson Theatre in LA. It transferred to Broadway in March 2007 with David winning a Tony for his performance as a leading actor in a musical.

In 2010 he appeared on the West End stage in a revival of David Hirson’s play La BĂȘte directed by Matthew Warchus, before it also moved to New York. David signed my sketch at the Harold Pinter Theatre’s stage door in London.