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How do you develop and stage a large musical?

Photo by Simon Jay Price

Richard Haley, Writer and Producer of Love Beyond gives a few insights into the challenges of building a new musical production such as Love Beyond from the ground-up and the importance of maintaining great communication, commitment and collaboration from everyone in the team.

While the vision for any venture generally starts with one person, it often requires a breadth of expertise and experience that exceeds that person for it to become a reality. This has certainly been true of the journey to bring Love Beyond to the stage.

From music and choreography, to costume and set design, business and finance to administration, public speaking, marketing, and many other fields of expertise - it is fair to say that no one person is sufficiently equipped to carry out all these tasks successfully for a production of this scale. In essence, an interdependent collaboration of individuals, suppliers and supporters must be formed. And it’s fair to say it creates a few challenges along the way.

As the person with the original vision for the musical production of Love Beyond, one of the most difficult decisions I have faced is identifying and choosing the right people to become part of our company (including the cast) because of the level of responsibility that needs to be entrusted to everyone to make this show excellent in every way possible.

I guess I’d describe part of my role as a vision bearer – one who inspires and equips others with the overarching aims of what we are seeking to achieve through this production. It’s a huge responsibility to be retelling such a significant story through the genre of music and theatre, and while we want to be true to the meaning and message of the bible, I also want to make sure that it’s accessible and enjoyable for everyone who comes to see the show.

So it’s also my job to make sure everyone keeps on track with how the production is developing and that each new person in the team fully understands and embraces what we’re about. That way I can be fully confident to release them to do what they are best at – knowing that together we can deliver a fantastic piece of musical theatre that will enrich many people for years to come.

Regular company meetings in London ensure that the creative and production teams remain fully engaged and aware of what’s happening across all areas of delivery – with the opportunity for everyone to review progress, air problems, let off steam and more importantly find solutions to the multitude of issues that need to be addressed on a daily basis!

The interdependent nature of what we’re doing means that if one person is missing – the whole team feels it. However, no one can ever say their role is more important than anybody else’s – as without everyone pulling together effectively, we don’t have a show!

Left to right: Richard Haley, Tabitha Webb and Steve Kitchen

For Steve Kitchen (our Executive producer) Tabitha Webb (Co-writer and Director) and myself, Love Beyond is more than a project or another piece of theatre or music. This is something very special that we have been entrusted with, to develop excellently in the confidence that it has the scope to grow and be performed far and wide. Whilst we are the ones who get the privilege of fronting the production – it is through the hard work, commitment and collaboration of a large team that Love Beyond The Musical is being brought to life on the big stage. And for that, I am truly humbled.

Richard Haley
Writer & Producer, Love Beyond

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