Wallasey songwriter bringing musical battle between good and evil to the Leasowe Castle Hotel next week
A WALLASEY songwriter and former rock musician is bringing a battle between darkness and light to the Leasowe Castle Hotel next week.
Colin McCourt is staging his musical adaptation of the 1934 Dennis Wheatley novel The Devil Rides Out at the hotel for one night only on Thursday, November 10.
Colin says it was his dream to write a musical based on the novel, calling it “the greatest adventure story ever written”.
After telling his brother his idea one afternoon, he wrote the title song in just10 minutes.
He said: “I’d been a songwriter for some years and this great story inspired me more than words can say to turn it into a musical.
“The musical almost wrote itself. I just hung on, thrilled at the ride.
“I recorded the 30 songs I had written for the album, wrote a stage script and then managed to track down Dennis Wheatley’s grandson, Dominic, who owned the rights to Dennis’ books.
“He, thank God, loved the music and gave me his approval.”
The story, a tale of magic and the occult and the triumph of good over evil, centres around three “Modern Musketeers” – wise Franco-Russian aristocrat the Duke de Richleau, tough American Rex Van Ryn and their young friend, the shy, nervous city financier Simon Aron.
Simon’s quest to further his business career leads him to become entangled with a group of Satanists led by a defrocked French priest Damien Mocata.
The Hammer Films adaptation of the novel, starring Christopher Lee, Charles Gray, Patrick Mower and Paul Eddington, was released in 1968.
The musical has been staged before locally, with one production at the Liverpool Neptune Theatre starring Bernie Nolan.
Colin, who played in local rock groups before becoming a professional songwriter for Screen Gems/Columbia Pictures Music, said: “I felt the time was right to revive it. I am particularly proud of this new cast.
“Many of them have not performed previously, but everyone has put their heart and soul into the rehearsals and grown with the production.
“If the performance is a success, and some Devil ‘angels’ can be found to help fund it, I hope to re-stage it for a three-night run early next year.”
Tickets for the Leasowe Castle Hotel performance are £6. Call 606 9493 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org