Starlight express

Дата канвертавання24.04.2016
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Music by:

Andrew Lloyd Webber

("Cats", "The Phantom of the Opera", "Jesus Christ Superstar",

"Evita", “The Beautiful Game”)
First performance March 1984, London, Apollo Victoria Theatre

Broadway premiere March 1987, New York, Gershwin Theatre

German premiere June 1988, Bochum, Starlight Express-Theater
German Text: Sabine Grohmann, Wolfgang Adenberg

Directed by: Trevor Nunn

Choreography and Musical Staging: Arlene Phillips

Sound: Martin Levan

Lightning: David Hersey

Design and Costumes: John Napier

Starlight Express Bochum
German Text: Sabine Grohmann, Wolfgang Adenberg

Directed by: Dion McHugh

Choreography and Musical Staging: Arlene Phillips

Musical Director: Phil Edwards

Instruments: David Cullen

Sound: Martin Levan

Assistence: Sue Jenkinson
Lightning: David Hersey

Assistence: Rick Belzer, Douglas Cox

Design and Costumes: John Napier

Designingenieur: Mike Barnett

Music and Sound revision 2008:

Sound and Music Consultant: Nigel Wright

Additional Music Services: Graham Hurman

Additional Sound Mixing: Robin Sellars

Pro Tools Editor: Paul Chandler

Keyboard Programming: Dave Rose

Score Preparation/Copyist: Mark Cumberland

With best thanks to Phil Edwards for his dedicated work on the revision


The Most Rapid Musical on Roller Skates

Ready, steady, go! Flags fall, lights flash, helmets shine. The old steam engine “Papa” starts the race with “Dustin”, the coal car. The brake car “Caboose” takes a sharp turn at 40 mph closely followed by “Hashamoto”, the Japanese Express, dashing down the 280 metre circuit through the auditorium on roller skates. Night after night the audience in Bochum can experience the thrilling race of the STARLIGHT EXPRESS.
STARLIGHT EXPRESS in Bochum is the most successful musical in the world. Since its opening on June 12th, 1988 almost 14,5 million people have seen the train race championships and there’s no end in sight! Even the shows on the New York Broadway and the London Westend can’t keep up with this record attendance.
People from all over Germany and nearby countries come to see Andrew Lloyd Webber’s masterpiece. 26 singers and dancers in fancy costumes bring the all-time favourite childhood dream to life. A total of 40 cast members combine acting, dancing, singing and of course skating to an energetic life-show.

The production costs of STARLIGHT EXPRESS totalled 20 million US$. Unique lightning effects and fascinating stage techniques contribute a crucial part to the immense success of this impressive musical. Round 1.700 people can witness up to glistening stars in the STARLIGHT EXPRESS – Theater every night. The technical main attraction is a nine ton hydraulic bridge hovering above the stage. It links different stage levels on which singers and dancers can perform.

Andrew Lloyd Webber’s STARLIGHT EXPRESS is a perfect combination of wonderful, timeless music, acrobatic skate action and exceptional stage techniques.

The history of


The musical, created by the English composer-legend Andrew Lloyd Webber, celebrated its first German performance on June 12th, 1988. Webber, whose first musical was “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat” in 1971, has brought numerous productions to stage: “Evita”, “Jesus Christ Superstar”, “Cats”, “The Phantom of the Opera” and “Aspects of Love” are just a selection of his works. But not only Andrew Lloyd Webber, who wrote the wonderful music, was responsible for the emerge of STARLIGHT EXPRESS. Also Richard Stilgoe (lyrics) and Trevor Nunn (direction) as well as Arlene Philipps, who directed respectively choreographed the dance numbers, contributed a great part to its success.

The STARLIGHT EXPRESS – Theatre in Bochum, which was built especially for the show, is located centrally near the motorway A40 and was completed in record time. Construction began in December 1986 and was finished in January 1988. The set design as well as the constructive drawings of the machinery were available in September 1987. The installation of the decoration in the hall took merely four months, from January to April 1988. On June 12th, 1988 STARLIGHT EXPRESS finally had its premiere and has been running nonstop, seven times a week, since then. Performances are daily – except for Mondays and Tuesdays – at 8.00 pm (6.30 pm on Wednesdays, 7 pm on Sundays), Saturdays additionally at 3 pm and Sundays additionally at 2 pm.

The ensemble of STARLIGHT EXPRESS is international. The actors come from England, America, Germany, the Netherlands and other countries – the musical accomplishes a mixture of a lot of different nationalities.

The 26 roles, exclusively played by singers and dancers on roller skates, are casted multiply, so the whole cast makes up more than 40 persons. The production employs more than 150 people backstage, counting cast and orchestra, plus 160 in the front of the house.

The World Championship

of Railway Engines

STARLIGHT EXPRESS tells a child’s dream: It’s bedtime. The mother advises her son to put his trains away. But in his dream the game proceeds: The engines and carriages adopt human characteristics. They are friendly and arrogant, brave and deceitful. They love and suffer, lose and win.

All types of trains pull into an imaginery station to registrate for the International Trainrace Championship. The rules are clear-cut: Only those are allowed to take off who have a partner coupled.

The young steam engine “Rusty” – charming, but technically outdated – is in deep doubt of having a chance to win the competition. His lack of self-confidence stays no secret to the lady carriages, so they are much more interested in the rocking-and-rolling diesel train “Greaseball”, who is confident of victory. A strong rival for both, “Rusty” and “Greaseball”, is the hypermodern electric engine “Electra”. “Pearl”, the first class carriage, abandons “Rusty” to hook up with the promising challenger.

The conflicts between the locomotives increase and the brake car “Caboose” even makes it worse – he manipulates the engines to decide who will be the winner.

But in spite of all those barricades, “Rusty” remains defiant – the legendary STARLIGHT EXPRESS gives him courage and self-confidence. With this newly gained believe, “Rusty” is ready to win the race and to conquer “Pearl’s” heart.

To the beats of blues, jazz, rock’n’roll, country, rap and disco the engines hold thrilling races on f race tracks, which directly lead to the auditorium.

A breathtaking combination of music and dance, unique choreography, fancy costumes and make-up, dreamlike lightning, laser-effects and the fascinating stage technique – all this is STARLIGHT EXPRESS.

The Technics

The musical STARLIGHT EXPRESS doesn’t just owe its success to the popular music of Andrew Lloyd Webber or the artistic achievements of the actresses and actors. Over and over again the audience is impressed by the extraordinary technical gimmicks with which the story is being staged.

Centrepiece of the stage techniques is the Main Bridge, a hydraulically directed nine ton bridge, which is completely mobile and floats above the 1,100 m² stage. With its changing positions, it provides a continuously varying set design. Additionally the three different levels – with a vertical height of 7,50 m – are connected by a hydraulic brink and a three part rising podium. The skate race track has a total length of 280 m and extends right through the auditorium.

The STARLIGHT EXPRESS – Theatre has also set standards in the field of lightning. More than 800 stationary spot-lights are installed and 11 tele-scans deflect the light through movable mirrors. 840 fluorescent tubes mark the railway sleepers. Due to a perfect combination of lasers and fog a cloudy firmament is animated, when “Rusty” meets the legendary STARLIGHT EXPRESS.

Sounds are provided by 110 loudspeakers, divided in eight groups. Furthermore there are 26 wireless microphones with 60 extra channels for the orchestra and choir. The orchestra is placed under the stage in the basement.

Technical Data


Number of seats round 1.700

Stage area 1.100 sqm

Total area 4.800 sqm

Skating tracks total length 280 m

Barriers lowered by electrical motors 105 m

Difference in height between the levels 7,5 m

Technical Stage Data

(Stage machinery and its control)

12 vertically movable gates pneumatic

1 movable wedge hydraulic

1 swivel seasaw hydraulic

1 profile bridge in 3 parts hydraulic

1 4-way synchronic, independently movable main bridge hydraulic

Eight tons of steel were used to construct the sophisticated bridges, tracks and tunnels on the stage and in the auditorium of the STARLIGHT EXPRESS - Theatre.

Lighting Data

Fluorescent tubes (train tracks) 840

Spots 800

Computer programmed movable telescans 24



Stadionring 24 – D-44791 Bochum

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