FIRST LISTEN! Daniel and Laura Curtis present their new album”Overture”

One of the greatest joys I have from creating this Blog is being able to discover and promote work of truly amazing performers and composers who I had never heard of before. It’s opened my eyes to a new world of talent and, quite frankly, more awesomeness than I have ever imagined. 

This most definitely applies to the awesome duo of Daniel and Laura Curtis. Their first full album – Love on 42nd Street – showed me, and the world what truly stunning magic they can create. Featuring the vocal talents of Ramin Karimloo, Sierra Boggess, Lea Salonga and John Owen Jones to name just a few, it was so thrilling to see Daniel and Laura’s work received in such a positive way by performers and the music industry alike.

I’m thrilled to say that Daniel and Laura are back and better than ever! Their second album “Overture” is out this Monday and I was truly blessed to be given a sneaky opportunity to hear this glorious collection of songs prior to its release. And I can tell you, in my opinion, this album is their best work to date!

Split over 2 very clear Acts, each starting with their own truly beautiful “Overture, this album takes you on a enchanting journey through the most stunning score, full of joy, heartbreak and so much haunting beauty, you would think you are listening to a recording of the next great piece of British Musical Theatre. Daniel and Laura’s music always speaks so much to my heart – but they have truly excelled themselves here.

What makes this album such a stand out is also the phenomenal cast of West End and Broadway performers that have leant their vocal talents to such majestic songs- it really is a Who’s who of musical theatre talent.  From Earl Carpenter, James Monroe Iglehart, Emmanuel Kojo, Will Swenson and the fantastic Bryce Pinkham to Melinda Doolittle, Emma Hatton, Charlotte Jaconelli, Natalie Weiss and the stunning Rachel John – the vast array of talent just shows how respected, loved and admired both Daniel and Laura are. 

This really is a must buy album for not only musical theatre fans, but for fans of music in general. You will not find any other album out there which features this array of performers singing the most beautifully emotive range of songs!

“Overture” is out on Monday 24th October. You can buy it over at http://www.danandlauracurtis.com/ or at all major music download sites.

MUST SEE – The Railway Children (Kings Cross Theatre)

Despite being an English teacher by day, “The Railway Children” by E.Nesbit was actually one of those stories that I had never read. Little did I know that, thanks to my wonderful Year 11 pupils giving me tickets to see the show at the King’s Cross Theatre, it was quickly going to become one of my all time favourites. 

I should probably first explain that I was given this ticket by my Year 11 pupils after their GCSE exams before they left school as a thank you gift. (They know what a theatre lover I am and I was bowled over by their generosity!) They were especially thrilled that it was a show I hadn’t seen too! (A rarity for me, I promise!)

I had previously visited the King’s Cross Theatre to see “In the Heights”- another fantastic show which runs alongside “The Railway Children” and another MUST SEE! Seeing the extremely unique staging used in this production, it made me even more curious as to how it would be transformed for this classic novel. 

But as I walked into the Theatre on a sunny afternoon in early August, I was bowled over to see how the space had been changed! 

I was greeted by a bustling stage area, full of passengers  (ensemble cast members) waiting for the next train, chatting with audience members (young and old) as they did strolled up and down the sides of the railway track. I won’t lie – the smile that appeared on my face, and the warmth in my heart I gained at this moment is something I’ll never forget.

Over the next 2 and a bit hours, I was completely swept away by this magnificent production. The highs, the lows. The laughs, the tears. The heart warming story of making the most of new adventures, being brave in the face of danger, and never giving up hope brought so much joy to every member of the 1000 strong audience – myself included. 

Add to that a stunning stage production with some of the most unique sets anywhere in Theatre Land (including a full size steam train!) and a truly amazing cast – this really was the most uplifting day out, and I can’t thank my Year 11s enough for such a thoughtful gift.

This is a production for the whole family! It is running at the King’s Cross Theatre, London until the 8th January 2017. You can find more details about the production, as well as buy tickets, at https://www.railwaychildrenlondon.com/home 

I urge you all to go and experience the magic of “The Railway Children” – I promise you that you won’t regret it!