An Autumn Letter from Michelle

At Last the new Jazz CD by Heather CairncrossWelcome to my new website designed by the talented and versatile, Heather Cairncross.  Heather’s highly acclaimed album At Last was released earlier this year to wonderful reviews. Heather’s voice was my inspiration for Grace in Just Henry. You can hear clips from all fourteen songs from At Last by clicking HERE.

By an extraordinary coincidence, the composer of a one woman jazz musical hello life! originally written for Heather, is bringing out an album in November. The album New Things To Say will include four of the songs from it. Heather and I created the book, I wrote the lyrics and Alexander L’Estrange wrote the music. It was Heather’s performance in the musical which won Pick of the Fringe at the Brighton Fringe Festival. The album will be performed by Alexander and his wife Joanna Forbes L’Estrange otherwise known as the duo, L’Estranges in the Night with guest musicians.

And for those who laughed at radio 4’s hilarious series Two Pipe Problems, written by Michael Chaplin, and starring Richard Briers and Stanley Baxter as resident sleuths living in a retirement home for members of the theatrical profession, keep your ears peeled. A new episode is about to be recorded for Radio 4. It was Michael who adapted Just Henry for ITV.

That’s all the news for now.


Update: New Things To Say is available now by clicking  on the CD Cover.

Goodnight Mister Tom To Open In The West End

Goodnight Mister Tom The PlayFiery Angel, The Ambassador Theatre Group, Fiery Dragons & The Children’s Touring Partnership present The Chichester Festival Theatre Production of Goodnight Mister Tom

A play by David Wood from the novel by Michelle Magorian

Live on stage in London for a limited 9 week season!

After playing to packed houses across the UK, this critically acclaimed Chichester Festival Theatre production comes to London for a limited 9 week season. Now a modern classic, Michelle Magorian’s wonderfully uplifting tale is brought gloriously to life in a brand new stage adaptation by David Wood, with Olivier Award-winning actor Oliver Ford Davies starring as Mister Tom.

Set during the dark and dangerous build up to the Second World War, Read more >>>>

Interview By Kieran Kinsella For Best British TV Website

Just Henry TV Drama CastMichelle Magorian is one of Britain’s most popular authors and it is no surprise that some of her finest works have been dramatized on TV. Inspector Morse actor John Thaw was among the stars who brought Goodnight Mr Tom to life in 1998 and on Sunday 18 December, fans of Michelle’s work can see Just Henry on ITV. As with Goodnight Mr Tom, ITV have spared no expense in assembling an all-star line up for Just Henry that includes Sheila Hancock, Dean Andrews and Elaine Cassidy. Michelle very kindly agreed to talk to Best British TV about the book, the show and her other work.

As a writer do you feel nervous about allowing someone else to bring your book to life in the form of a TV Show?

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Play As Cast – Not Typecast

Michelle Magorian plays a "down and out" in Mayor Barbara by George Bernard Shaw

‘Play as cast’ were the words written on a long term acting contract with a repertory theatre company. I was not only fortunate enough to have been offered these contracts but my work was mostly in theatres that were three and a half weekly rep.

For six days a week these companies would have three weeks to rehearse a new play or musical followed by the technical and dress rehearsals, while giving six evening performances and two matinees of the preceding production. Each month we would be given the cast list for the following play/musical and would be expected to play whatever was thrown at us. Occasionally I was cast as more than one character in the same piece.

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