Principal Chris Hocking leads staff and students at ArtsEd in a rousing Happy Birthday chorus:
“We all wish Andrew much love and many happy returns for his birthday celebrations. We are so lucky to have a President who is so passionate and dedicated to the students and their training.”
Andrew Lloyd Webber, 70 today, has been president of ArtsEd since 2007 and his ongoing help and support has been invaluable. Not least in his generous £3.5 million support of our fantastic theatre, which was renovated and relaunched in November 2013, rightly named The Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation Theatre. And the first show to open the theatre? What else but an amazing performance of Evita, in which Andrew was overcome by the talented cast and declared:
“I was not prepared for such powerful story-telling, and for hearing quite simply the best Eva Perón I’ve ever heard!”
The theatre’s launch performance of Evita, composed by Andrew Lloyd Webber with lyrics by Tim Rice, was directed and choreographed by Joey McKneely. The roles of Eva, Perón and Che were performed by ArtsEd’s third year musical theatre students Mollie Melia-Redgrave, Daniel Donskoy and Olly Dobson.
The Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation Theatre has seen some equally amazing performances over the past five years, from students across all four ArtsEd schools, as well as from external performers. The Orpheus Centre recently used the theatre and were delighted with their experience:
“Words cannot express what a great week the Orpheus students and alumni had when they were rehearsing Orpheus the Mythical at ArtsEd. It is an inspiring place to be in, let alone rehearse in; we were all overwhelmed with the friendliness and politeness of all the students and staff we met on our travels around the building. Thank you so much for accommodating us and making our time there hugely enjoyable and rewarding.” Caroline Pedley, PA to Sir Richard Stilgoe
Read more about Andrew Lloyd Webber’s long and illustrious career here and spread the Happy Birthday wishes by sharing this story!