Sir Sunset

July 1996

At any given time, there are as many as 50 major productions of Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber’s creations being staged around the world. “Cats,”?“Phantom of the Opera,” and “Sunset Boulevard” all continue successful runs on Broadway. “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” —?his first hit — recently played to President Clinton in Washington D.C. And the film version of “Evita,” starring Madonna, is now in post-production.

So getting the 48-year-old composer to sit down long enough for an interview is no simple trick. 5280’s Thom Wise caught up with Sir Andrew early in June, two days after the Tony Awards and during a break in auditions for his latest musical, “Whistle Down the Wind.”

5280: Why was Denver chosen as the first city in the national tour of “Sunset Boulevard”?
ALW: Quite honestly, there was no particular reason. I understand it’s an ideal theater city and you’re quite supportive.
5280: Have you ever been to Denver?
ALW: No, I’ve never been actually. Although I shall be coming at some point, though not necessarily for the opening.
5280: What’s next?
ALW: I’ve got two on the go. One is “By Jeeves,” which is running out of town now and will soon open in London. I’m very pleased with it. It’s very small, with just five musicians and a small cast. Then I’m working on “Whistle Down the Wind” with Hal Prince, so the old team is back. It’s set in Louisiana in 1959, and is about a group of children that meet a convict in a barn and think he’s Jesus Christ. They protect him from the adults, and the man redeems himself in the end. It’s actually a very sad story, and very telling. It’s about the innocence of children.