It's showtime at Rothamsted with West End stars performing in 'Musicals at the Manor'

You can enjoy musicals at Rothamsted Manor in Harpenden.

Steve Moss, musical director of Mary Poppins, at Rothamsted in Harpenden. - Credit: Rothamsted Research

West End musical theatre stars will be performing a series of special concerts in Harpenden this summer.

Rothamsted Manor is working in collaboration with Steve Moss, the musical director of the London production of Mary Poppins, to produce 24 concerts featuring 15 West End stars.

Over the summer, the Grade I-listed Jacobean manor house, which is hidden away on the Rothamsted Estate in Harpenden, will play host to a series of intimate shows in the Great Drawing Room with stars performing popular songs from top West End musicals.

The collaboration came about when Steve, who is a Hertfordshire local, visited a Heritage Open Day at Rothamsted Manor last September with his family.

Steve Moss, musical director of Mary Poppins, and Abi Stanton of Rothamsted Enterprises.

Organisers of this summer's Rothamsted Manor concerts - Steve Moss, musical director of Mary Poppins, and Abi Stanton of Rothamsted Enterprises. - Credit: Rothamsted Research

He introduced himself to Abi Stanton, who works at Rothamsted in the events team.

Steve suggested that they work in collaboration to make a series of intimate concerts happen, the result of which will be seen this summer, starting on June 25 with Aaron Lee Lambert and Charlotte Kennedy. There will be matinee and evening performances.

Other artists due to perform during the season include Laura Pick, Danny Whitehead, Emma Hatton, Matthew Croke, Emma Williams, Scott Davies, Daniel Boys, Sophie Evans, Katie Hall, Oliver Tompsett, Emma Kingston, Oliver Savile and West End superstar Kerry Ellis, who is known for her role in Queen’s We Will Rock You and Wicked.

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Steve Moss, producer and musical supervisor of the Rothamsted summer concerts, said: “It’s wonderful for me to be able to bring artists of this calibre to Rothamsted Manor.

"Musical theatre and the arts generally have suffered horribly throughout the pandemic. Artists who are at the top of their game have been unable to work and showcase their talents.

"Many of my friends and colleagues have been working in supermarkets, as delivery drivers, and in customer service roles to make ends meet.

"It's so wonderful to be able to collaborate with Rothamsted Manor and provide an opportunity for these incredible artists to showcase their talents again.”

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has been devastating to musical theatre and the arts.

The Rothamsted ‘Musicals at the Manor’ summer series will provide the opportunity for West End stars to come together and perform in a very special and historic setting.

These leading lights of musical theatre have all starred in principal roles in top theatre shows such as Hamilton, Les Misérables, The Phantom of the Opera, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Wicked.

Steve Moss, musical director of Mary Poppins, and Abi Stanton of Rothamsted Enterprises

Steve Moss, musical director of Mary Poppins, and Abi Stanton of Rothamsted Enterprises, are the organisers of the Rothamsted Manor concerts. - Credit: Rothamsted Research

Rothamsted’s Abi Stanton added: “When I first met Steve and he told me of his ambitions to bring concerts to Rothamsted Manor, I really hoped that we could make it possible.

"The conferencing and events industry has suffered enormously during the pandemic: weddings have been postponed and business events have been moved online or cancelled entirely.

"For the concerts to be one of the first events that we can organise at the Manor as lockdown restrictions are lifted is so exciting. I’m proud I’ve been able to help make them happen with Steve.”

Nicole Sadd, chief executive officer of Rothamsted Enterprises, added: “We are absolutely delighted to be able to hold events again.

"While the events industry has suffered tremendously during the pandemic, one of the silver linings for Rothamsted has been that we have been able to engage with our local community more than ever before by running small, socially distanced events for the public when permitted. And what a series of events these are!

"We are very excited indeed to welcome these incredible artists to perform at the Manor.

"The building is so special and atmospheric and will be even more so when these singers perform. We simply cannot wait!”

The Musicals at the Manor line-up.

The Musicals at the Manor line-up. - Credit: Rothamsted Enterprises

Performance dates and artists are:

  • June 25: Aaron Lee Lambert and Charlotte Kennedy
  • June 26: Laura Pick and Danny Whitehead
  • July 2: Danny Whitehead and Laura Pick
  • July 3: Emma Hatton and Matthew Croke
  • July 9: Emma Williams and Scott Davies
  • July 10: Daniel Boys and Sophie Evans
  • July 16: Katie Hall and Oliver Tompsett
  • July 17: Katie Hall and Scott Davies
  • July 23 and 31: Emma Kingston and Oliver Savile
  • July 24 and 30: Kerry Ellis

For tickets and more details, visit www.rothamstedenterprises.com/events/ or call 01582 938500. 

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