PERFORMING in Thurrock since 1960 and producing a show a year until recently when the Group opted to stage two shows a year, TOPS on Stage are about to march on stage with another Broadway Classic – The Music man. Probably better known for the songs "Seventy-Six Trombones" and "Till there was you" sung by the Beatles in the late sixties.
The Music Man is a beautifully crafted musical, colourful, funny and full of some very familiar tunes. It focuses man the arrival in town of Professor Harold Hill played by well-known local actor – Luke Coldham who lives in Blackshots lane, Grays. Harold is a con man of the first order and Salesman who convinces the Town and its council leaders to allow him to form a children’s brass band by reminding them of all the "bad" that can go wrong. His intention, to sell the instruments and then miraculously disappear from the town leaving the townsfolk holding a complete band of instruments with no one to teach the children.
But Harold’s plot fails when he meets and falls in love with the Town Librarian Marion – their relationship is a fiery one, but in staying, Harold is forced to teach the children how to play even though he himself hasn’t a single note of music teacher in him.
TOPS are made up from over fifty local people including 15 children who form the Professors band. "The task of finding a complete set of instruments and band costumes was one of the greatest challenges with this show", explains Gary Sullivan – Chairman of TOPS. "Our wardrobe mistress was fortunate in finding a company in Southend who just happened to have the very thing required and with the very grateful support of Thurrock Music Services along with the Grays Convent School, we were able to muster enough instruments for the band!".
The Music man will march, in all its splendour on stage between Thursday 17th and Saturday 9th March with evening performances at 7.30 pm and a Saturday Matinee at 2.30 pm. Tickets can be obtained from the Group Box office by calling Marion Hunting on (01375) 675591 or by visiting the online booking site at www.topstickets.co.uk