Jeff Wayne brings his War of The Worlds soundtrack to the stage
LEADING MUSICIAN Jeff Wayne is marking 30 years since he composed the musical version of HG Wells’s sci-fi novel The War of The Worlds with what he hopes will be one of his best productions yet.
Mr Wayne, 65, wrote and produced The War of The Worlds album in 1978. Around 15 million records have been sold. It has won two Ivor Novellos awards, and last year Mr Wayne won Classic Rock’s Showman of the year award. Next June, he will perform in a 13-date anniversary UK tour, Jeff Wayne’s Musical Version of The War of The Worlds — Alive on Stage.
He tells People: “Conducting and playing live music is totally invigorating. It’s as exciting as you can get. Conducting and playing your own show is an extra buzz.” He adds: “Every tour we have done we have kept adding new ingredients.
“We are adding so many new things, so that’s a creative challenge.” The tour will feature various magic and special effects, including an act where actress Jennifer Ellison, who plays leading lady Beth, will levitate. Mr Wayne, who has been preparing for the tour for the past five months, will be conducting The Black Smoke Bands and The ULLAdubULLA Strings.
He admits he did not envisage his musical version of The War of The Worlds being as successful as it has been. “I’ve done things where I thought, ‘This is going to be the biggest thing ever,’ which disappears before you know it. And there are things that you feel you are proud of but you see less commercial opportunity, which turn out to be perhaps one of the biggest things one has ever done — and The War of The Worlds would head that list.”
A father-of-four, Mr Wayne lives in Hertfordshire. For further information, go to: http://tickets. thewaroftheworlds.com