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Cover to Original Cast AlbumBLONDEL

a musical for the '80s - the 1180s

Book and lyrics by Tim Rice; Music by Stephen Oliver

Old Vic - 9 November, 1983 (87 perfs) Transferred to Aldwych Theatre 20 January, 1984 (278 perfs)

Story

A somewhat anachronistic tale based on a story of Richard the Lionheart and his rescue from prison by a faithful troubadour, Blondel. 

Blondel is intent on writing a hit rondel to the exclusion of everything else. His efforts at patriotic song writing don't get him very far but Blondel, ever the monarchist, refuses to write music for the usurper of the throne, Prince John.

He decides that he should go to Europe to acquaint Richard with what is going on in England under the reign of John and to finance his trip, Blondel takes along his backing group, the Blondettes. 

In pursuit of this artiste who is dabbling in politics comes a hired assassin to eliminate Blondel and thus the threat to John's power and ambition. Also following Blondel is his girlfriend, Fiona, who knows the assassin and is trying to get a warning through to Blondel. 

Blondel's journeys take him to Austria where the Duke of Austria somehow gets in the way of the assassin's bolt meant for Blondel. Richard is rescued from the prison where he has been incarcerated and is brought back to England in time to save John from having himself crowned King. Blondel is hailed as a star.

Cast:

Monks (4) close harmony group acting as narrators
Blondel
Fiona
Blondettes (3) Blondel's backing group
Prince John
Baron Reg
Baron Harvey
King Richard
Assassin
Duke of Austria

plus chorus of courtiers, peasants, Europeans and soldiers

Orchestration: (by John Cameron)

Keyboard
Violin/viola
Trumpet/flugelhorn
Woodwind
Guitars
Bass Guitar
Drums
Percussion
Trombone
French Horn
Flute and piccolo

Discography:

Original London Cast - MCA DBL 1