John Beswick

Conductor


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Music Theatre Biography

John has worked extensively in the field of Music Theatre and has conducted the West End productions of both Les Miserables (for which he was Associate Musical Director) and Avenue Q (Associate MD). He was Assistant Musical Director for the first UK tour of Miss Saigon and returned as Musical Director for the subsequent new touring production of the show. He also worked as Associate Musical Director for Blur front-man Damon Albarn's pop-opera Monkey: Journey to the West during it's time at the O2.

Away from the West End, John has conducted numerous productions for professional, semi-professional, student and amateur groups. His interest in music theatre began with a student production of Sweeney Todd in 1990 and he has worked on many student productions since then, including (in 2008) a production of City of Angels with the final year drama students at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. Other student productions he has conducted include West Side Story, Me and My Girl, The Wizard of Oz, High School Musical, Grease, Guys and Dolls, Fame and two productions of Oliver, one of which was the first ever Ukrainian production of the show for The British International School in Kiev. In the autumn of 2013 he conducted his first show at Mountview College, a production of Half a Sixpence.

For three years, John was Musical Director of Pimlico Opera during which time he conducted three of their acclaimed Prison Projects: in 2005 he worked on Sondheim's Assassins in HMP Coldingly, followed by Chicago in HMP Bronzefield (2006) and Les Miserables in HMP Wandsworth (2007). The projects involved preparing a cast largely made up of prison inmates (working with a professional production team and band) for several public performances of the shows taking place inside the prison complex. John also worked on a project called From Cars to Mars with Swansea City Opera in association with the Dragon Arts (who offer help and therapy through participation in the arts to the socially disadvantaged); this project culminated in a performance at the Welsh Assembly Building in Cardiff.

John is in constant demand as a keyboard player in the West End and on tour, and has played on the West End productions of Top Hat, Legally Blonde and Jersey Boys as well as the touring productions of Phantom of the Opera, The Full Monty, Les Miserables and Me and My Girl. He has worked with Lee Mead and Kerry Ellis and, in 2010, helped prepare Ruthie Henshall for her Sounds of Hollywood tour.

Music Theatre Repertoire List

Damon Albarn
Monkey Journey to the West

Arlen/Harburg/Stothart
The Wizard of Oz

Lionel Bart
Oliver

Leonard Bernstein
West Side Story

Alain Boublil/Claude-Michel Schönberg
Les Miserables
Miss Saigon

Cy Coleman
City of Angels

David Henecker
Half a Sixpence

Noel Gay
Me and My Girl

John Kander/Fred Ebb
Cabaret
Chicago

David Lawrence
High School Musical

Frank Loesser
Guys and Dolls

Robert Lopez/Jeff Marks
Avenue Q

Steve Margoshes
Fame

Stephen Sondheim
Assassins
Sweeney Todd

Charles Strouse
Annie

Paul Williams
Bugsy Malone

 

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