Spend a magical evening with musical theatre star and Olivier Award winner Michael Ball in conversation as he celebrates the publication of his debut novel, The Empire.
Set in the early 1920s, The Empire tells the story of a fictional theatre of the same name in the north of England. Known as ‘the jewel of the north’, it’s a palace of dreams which holds a very special place in the nation’s heart. But it’s not all bright lights and encores and the actors are not the only ones donning a disguise. With whispers of a cover-up, a scandal and sibling rivalry, tensions rise along with the curtain. For there is treachery at the heart of The Empire Theatre and a dark secret waiting in the wings…
With his trademark warmth and positivity, Michael will explore the magic of the theatre – my goodness we’ve missed it! – and how he wanted to try and capture that magic on the page. Sharing the inspiration behind the lives, loves and scandals of the Lassiter and Treadwell families, from the aftermath of the Great War and the Roaring Twenties to the dark days of the Second World War and the Blitz, Michael will chart the story of the high notes and the low notes of British musical theatre in all its glamour, greasepaint and glory. He will also consider his career more broadly, and how this novel acts as a love letter to all the theatres and performers he has worked in and with around the world.
This promises to be a thoroughly entertaining, moving, and delightful evening in true Michael Ball style. Don’t miss the opportunity to be swept away to another world by a new, instinctive and brilliant storyteller.