Richard Thomas (musician)

Richard Thomas (musician)

Richard Thomas is a musician, writer, and comedy actor. He is best known for composing and scoring the award-winning "Jerry Springer - The Opera" with Stewart Lee. Thomas collected the Laurence Olivier Award for Best Musical Score in 2004.

Richard Thomas's comedy career began in 1987, doing a musical act on keyboards. In 2000, he wrote and performed a one-act opera called "Tourette’s Diva" with four actors, which aired at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Thomas had the idea for an opera based on Jerry Springer at this time, and wrote it over the next two years, chiefly in workshops at Battersea Arts Centre. Thomas would offer a 'Beer for an Idea', where any audience members submitting a good idea would be rewarded with a can of Fosters (and poor ideas with a supermarket own brand).

After a number of small scale performances of the first act, which was in much the same shape as it remains today, the second act (where the characters descend into Hell) was vague and unformed. Thomas brought his friend Stewart Lee in to assist with the writing. Six months later, the opera was in a far more recognisable state, and was snapped up by the National Theatre.

Thomas has also worked on BBC comedy shows such as "Attention Scum" and "This Morning With Richard Not Judy". Starting on 25 February 2007, BBC Two aired his latest series, "Kombat Opera", comprising five standalone musical parodies of well-known television programmes.

External links

* [ Interview with Stewart Lee and Richard Thomas]

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