Here is this evening’s interview with Alex Jones on BBC The One Show:
Brian May, Roger Taylor, Ben Elton – The One Show 12/04/2023
Also available on BBC iPlayer
QUICK TRANSCRIPTION: E&OE
BRIAN: You know I still love playing them all I have to be honest. I would have to say ‘We Will Rock You’, especially as this is the moment where we’re relaunching the musical, which is named after that song. Always gives me a good feeling. I mean ‘Rock You’ and ‘Champions’ are a kind of staple for the end of the show and you kind of know it’s going to score and you know people will be happy at the end if they weren’t already. So yeah it’s lovely and you get the feeling you don’t really need the instruments. You can actually do it with the audience and they would get it.
ALEX SCOTT: … So many of the songs are celebrated in the musical. It’s been so successful. What, it started in 2000, but [directed to Roger] what do you actually – you weren’t a fan at the start right?
ROGER: Well it’s … I wasn’t …it’s not that I I wasn’t really a fan of musicals but of course we we tried to make it a real rock and roll musical which is why we felt we needed somebody funny like Ben and who had this sort of revelatory idea, I think, walking in the park one day. And so we’ve really had a lot of fun and brought a lot of pleasure I think in the years that the three of us collaborated… .Dominion.
ALEX JONES: Well this is … coming back to the West End, Ben, and people would be delighted. People absolutely love it. You’ve seen it you said you loved it. Now just for the people who haven’t seen it, tell us how the story works with the songs that we all know and love well.
BEN: WelI think the key, the reason I was the luckiest writer in Britain and got the gig – got invited to to put a show together for Queen’s theatrical debut, was because they wanted a comedy, because Queen have always had this wonderful sense of humour. There’s always been such glee and such joy and fun, you know. The whole idea is that people should should come together and celebrate our common Humanity.
I think that’s the reason that Queen have been such a cultural Colossus for so many decades that people feel uplifted in the presence of the music and so the musical had to do that too and for that it has to be humorous. It has to be laughter and that was really the first pitch.,which they came to me and said: “We want to make it funny and it is funny. Its, and perhaps that’s what makes it a bit different from most musicals. Because although musicals are fun, I love them. They’re not normal, full-on comedies as well as the greatest rock song book in history.
ALEX SCOTT: Well you’ve got some familiar faces in it. You’ve got, what, Brenda Edwards, Lee Mead…
BEN: Brenda Edwards she did two years for us at the Dominion when we did 12 years there, fantastically. Lee Mead, I know of course from Andrew’s “Joseph” and there’s a there’s an old codger. He did a fantastic audition. I mean I auditioned this bloke playing “The Rebel Leader“ and I was very impressed.
[To Roger] You thought he was all right. I’m making my West … I haven’t been in a musical since I was in an amateur production of “Oliver”, playing The Artful Dodger with the Godalming Theatre Group in 1973. So I’m very pleased to be 50 years later making my second performance. I get to sing a Roger Taylor song.
BEN: As I say we can’t wait I’ll tell you
We can’t wait.
I’ve obviously got somebody I can go to and that is an amazing privilege. Roger’s going to come in and work with me a bit on it and that will be just WOW. All those years ago and I’m going to be working with Roger to sing ‘Days Of Our Lives’ and with Brian.
ALEX JONES: Fantastic. Now we have had loads of messages for all three of you. First of all though we would like to say “Congratulations: Sir Brian, on the Knighthood. We should, I feel like we should all bow.
BRIAN: I like the curtseying thing.
ALEX: Yeah. Do people courtesy on the streets?
BRIAN: They should. He makes his horse all the time It’s the sword that puts them off, yeah. Thank you very much.
ALEX JONES: Alexis says “I first saw Queen when I was 10. I am now 46 and still listen to them and see Queen and Freddie as role models. Their music has inspired me, educated me and seen me through some very tough times in my life,” A little nice message.
ALEX SCOTT: Michelle says “Is there any chance of another Queen and Adam Lambert tour here in the UK?”
BRIAN: Well it’s not long since we did it, of course. We are going to the States in the Autumn and I think, well maybe somewhere else in the Spring and maybe we get back to England after that [to you. Well to ..] I can’t say Europe can I? We get back to Britain and possibly Europe as well.
BEN: Queen go on forever.
BRIAN: But I mean there’s no plans right now. No.
ROGER: We’re just still enjoying. It’s a thrill every time.
ALEX JONES: And Adam’s a great guy. Yes was on just the other week. Adam’s amazing.
ALL: He’s great
ALEX JONES: Well “We Will Rock You” opens at London Coliseum on the 2nd of June for 12 weeks.
EDITOR NOTE: Polishing.