West End or bust for Fylde director

Jim Thomas and the production of Jean D'Arc, at St Paul's Church, Marton
Jim Thomas and the production of Jean D'Arc, at St Paul's Church, Marton
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A MUSICAL director is heading to the West End in a final bid to make his theatrical dreams come true.

Jim Thomas, 72, wrote musical Jeanne D’Arc in 1994 and enjoyed a warm response from audiences at theatres across the Fylde coast.

But the show, which is based on the life of the iconic French martyr, Joan of Arc, did not attract the interest from producers Jim had hoped for.

Now 16 years later, the retired head of music at Blackpool and The Fylde College has decided to dust off his song sheets and give his dream one last chance.

Jim, from Sandhurst Avenue, St Annes, has joined forces with the St Annes-based Proscenium Theatre singers who have spent a year frantically raising £15,000.

Now their bags are packed and they are preparing to head down to the capital to face the music in front of an audience of producers.

And it is West End success or bust according to Jim.

He said: “There is no plan B for the show, we are just praying it will get a good response.

“Seeing Jeanne D’Arc performed on a professional stage would be a dream come true and a fantastic end to career I’ve loved.

“So many people who have heard songs from the show have said it should be in the West End. We’re all just keeping our fingers crossed.”

The cast, including a 15 piece orchestra and 30 performers, will present two 30 minute showcase sessions at the Dominion Theatre on August 30.

A carefully selected list of producers and theatre manager have been invited to attend.

Local singer Natalie Duyman will play the role of Joan of Arc.

Anyone wanting to offer support or sponsor the show can contact Jim on (01253) 729630.