Book by Shaun McKenna and Steven Dexter
Lyrics by Shaun McKenna
Music by Stephen Keeling
Based on "Marion's Wall" by Jack Finney
When Nick and Jan Cheyney move into a run-down apartment in San Francisco in 1977, they immediately start to renovate. Discovering a mysterious message scrawled in lipstick behind the wallpaper, they discover that a previous occupant of the apartment was an exuberant actress named Maddie Marsh. Her former lover, Al Turner, now owns the house. Al tell thems how Maddie had a chance to star in a silent movie for Cecil B. De Mille but was killed in a car accident on her way to start shooting.
Nick becomes fascinated by the long dead flapper and Jan, touched by tales of Maddie's zest for life, wishes she could be like her. Her dream comes true. Before long, the ghost of Maddie has appeared to Nick. Just as he is trying to come to terms with this, Maddie possesses Jan's body in the middle of an important social event. Nick falls in love with Maddie in his wife's body - and it makes matters worse when Maddie catches sight of a movie in colour and sound. She decides on the spot to have another go at becoming a star, using Jan's body as a vehicle.
This romantic farce is further complicated when Maddie meets her former lover, Al, as an old man - and by Nick's rapacious employer, the wealthy and influential Cordelia van Arc.
First produced by Kenny Wax at the Salisbury Playhouse to rave reviews in 1996, in a production directed by Martin Connor with Musical Supervision by Martin Lowe and arrangements by Caroline Humphris. The cast was led by Summer Rognlie, Mark McGann, Kevin Colson and Angela Richards.
Maddie then transferred to the West End, opening in September 1997 at the Lyric Theatre, Shaftesbury Avenue. Summer Rognlie and Kevin Colson reprised their earlier roles and were joined by Graham Bickley and Lynda Baron.
"A classic rousing Broadway score..."
Stephen Sondheim, BBC
"The show we've been waiting for... Terrific"
Charles Spencer, Daily Telegraph
"In McKenna's lyrics as much as in
the score, Sonheim rubs shoulders
with Jerome Kern...
Irving Wardle, Sunday Telegraph
"Blessed with a smashing script...."
"This musical is a real find..."
John Peter, Sunday Times
"Music propels this well-carpentered fairy tale into another dimension... a magical zone..."
The Sunday Times
Click links to watch song videos