Andrew Lloyd Webber
Lord Andrew "Arseface" Lloyd Webber MMMMMMXXXXVI of Corporate Greed or "The Grand Plagiariser" is a famous music copyist and arranger for such renowned composers as Beethoven, Verdi, Puccini, and Pink Floyd. In fact, he was taught music by Puccini, although few people are rude enough to point out that he does, in fact, look over 200 years old. One day, he was listening to his master's work "La Fanciulla del West" when his 2½ year old illegitimate son (mothered by Rosie O'Donnell) started to pound on a piano in 7/8 time. Fearing they might recall the incident someday and sue for copyright infringement, Webber murdered his child and Puccini and wrote the scores to The Phantom of the Opera and Evita. Before he was able to get these published, he fell in love with hippie Tim Rice and wrote Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor LSD Trip, Cats, and Starlight Express, all while stoned out of his fucking mind. In 1984, following the Tim Rice Buttplug Controversy, he decided to escape from the tyranny of the Andrew Lloyd Webber/Tim Rice partnership and break out on his own with the musical "POLYGAMY!" which won him much notoriety as well as many awards. In the last couple of years he has been appearing on BBC1 on Saturday nights embarrassing himself and looking a bit lost. He currently lives alone. Completely alone.
The Ups and Downs of "POLYGAMY!"
In terms of the initial inspiration for "Polygamy!" Andrew said, "I read an article in the Daily Star about a man in Lewisham who had married 16 women and a corgi. I thought what a great idea for a musical! Plus I needed a star vehicle for my wife Sarah Brightman and I knew she'd be perfect for one of the 16 women lead roles. He immediately employed trusty lyricist Bobby Giggles who says, "I went round to his house, and he was just pacing up and down, sweating like a pig, just saying 'Polygamy! Polygamy! I'm gonna do Polygamy!'. I knew then I had to be part of this".
Problems arose though with Bobby Giggles initial libretto. In his own words "I'd been avoiding marriage to one woman let alone 16, so I really had to try to imagine the funny side of it...turns out that's not what Andrew was after". In particular his words for the opening song "What the hell, I may as well be married to another one" met with Andrew's disapproval.
I can't remember, a thing about last night!, that beautiful night, that beautiful night,
But there's a strange woman in my bed, And she's wearing my ring, and she's wearing my ring...(etc)
In the end renegade librettist Charlie Dimples was brought in to tackle the subject matter. Andrew said, "He's got the look of someone who's been a polygamist. That mormon look". Charlie Dimples responded by saying "Yeah, I guess I do look like a mormon. And I got that Utah accent (laughs)". The story revolves around Shazza Britley played by Brightman, who finds she is the sixteenth wife of the man she marries. The rest of the musical revolves around her coming to terms with being the last fiddle in an orchestra of sixteen (and a corgi).
Disgraced former Tory minister Jeffery Archer decided to put in the £25 to get the production started. He says of his decision, "The minute Andrew told me that Sarah Brightman was going to be part of a harem, I knew I had to be a part of it". He added, "£25 was a lot back in 1984. At least £200,000 by today's rates", Hmmmmmmmm....
In the end the title role went to "Some Mothers Do 'ave 'Em!" star Michael Crawford, and not Barry Gibb (one of the few surviving members of the Bee Gees clan) as originally anticipated. "Marry Sarah Brightman?" said Crawford, "who wouldn't want to do that?!"
Unleashing 'POLYGAMY!' and critical reaction
'POLYGAMY!' was beset by many technical difficulties. Says Andrew, "We were originally gonna have a marriage celebrant swing down and over the heads of the audience, but on the opening night his cord snapped and he crashed down into the audience. Nightmare...absolute nightmare..."
Lead star Michael Crawford was also proving a problem, with behind the sets gossip concerning his 'diva' antics. Michael says of the reports, "I was a nightmare, I do admit it. I would sit there staring into this long mirror I had in my dressing room, just becoming that Polygamist, with like a mantra going through my head, 'You want it, you want it, you want it!'. My wife was very forgiving."
Luckily the show was overall a huge success. One major show highlight was "With this ring, I thee wed " with the rousing chorus of
Shazza: I give you this ring as a symbol of my love, For you, for you, Let it be a reminder that I am always by your side, And that I will always be a faithful partner, To you, to you.
Crawford (as Sid Scurvey): Here's a ring, quick stick it on your finger
Shazza: I'll honour and obey you
Crawford: Can't we hurry up, I need to watch the football
Shazza: With this ring, I gladly marry you and join my life to yours
Crawford: Come on, come on...back to the hers indoors.
Webber and Co were pleased that the edgy subject matter had gone down so well with 'Middle England'. Andrew was to say, "To see these old women in their fur coats, all jumping up and down and chorusing, "Marry me too, marry me too", was just breathtaking. Even Margaret Thatcher got in on the deal!" The Press reaction was mixed. The Observer newspaper noted, "How much lower can this slug of a man stoop?", whereas in stark contrast The Daily Mail used as their headline "POLYGAMISTASTIC!". Andrew Lloyd Webber was whisked away at this point to start a new life as a cellist. He has been far more successful in this field that he ever was plagiarising Puccini. Unfortunately, suffering from withdrawal symptoms, in a mad fit he wrote his Variations for Cello and Pop Group, in which he fulfilled his yearning by plagiarising Rachmaninov, Paganini, Brahms, Dusty Springfield and a Bolivian goatherd.
- Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor LSD Trip (1971)
- Jesus Christ Superstar (1973)
- Grease (1975)
- Evita (1976)
- CATS (1981)
- The Phantom of the Outhouse (1986)
- Whistle Down the Wind (Just Don't Piss Down The Wind) - With Jim Steinman (1998)
- 1976 (2006)
- Oliver's Shit(2008)
- I Am A Wartime German Propaganda Illustration Of Ronnie Corbett(His Entire Life)