Operation Mincemeat: A New Musical – 67 five-star reviews and counting – has recently extended its West End run for the seventh time through 22nd September 2024.
Based on the extraordinary true story during World War II, the elaborate scheme is largely attributed to Ewen Montagu and Charles Cholmondeley. However, until recently, little was known about one of the less-regarded female protagonists – MI5 secretary Hester Leggatt. Following dedicated fans of Operation Mincemeat: A New Musical successfully uncovering the missing pieces of her life, 1000 people attended a plaque unveiling in her honour last week at the Fortune Theatre, six months after the show’s West End premiere.
To celebrate this special moment for the production, Sony Music announces the upcoming release of a limited-edition 7″ yellow vinyl featuring Hester Leggatt’s heartfelt solo sung by Jak Malone, who portrays Leggatt on-stage, to coincide with International Women’s Day on 8 March 2024.
The 7-inch single will come with the original cast recording on the A-side and a live recording from the Fortune Theatre on the B-side. The vinyl can be pre-ordered here, while tickets for the musical are available from the Official Box Office here.
Grammy Award winning and Tony, Emmy, Olivier award nominated Steve Sidwell (Beautiful: The Musical, Broadway & Aldwych Theatre) is the producer, arranger, orchestrator and musical director behind this limited-edition vinyl. ‘Dear Bill’ is written by SpitLip, David Cumming, Felix Hagan, Natasha Hogdson & Zoë Roberts, and sung by Jak Malone.
Born on 20 December 1905, the news coincides with Hester Leggatt’s birthday, recently discovered by the musical’s fans.
SpitLip, the musical’s writers and composers, said: “We are incredibly excited to announce the release of this special limited-edition vinyl including a live theatre recording of ‘Dear Bill’ on International Women’s Day. The remarkable efforts of our show’s dedicated fans, resulting in the discovery of Hester Leggatt’s identity and the unveiling of a plaque in her honour, has been truly extraordinary. It brings us immense joy to celebrate Hester through this song, which we created specifically as her solo in the musical.”
Jak Malone said: “I love performing Dear Bill each night. I’m so happy that Hester’s legacy will be further marked by this release to coincide with International Women’s Day. A day when it is important to remember the women who have made an impact, both on our own lives and on the world at large. I think Hester’s story is a “shining example” of just that. I’m particularly excited about the addition of a live recording from the show, listeners are able to hear what ‘Dear Bill’ sounds like on any given night here at The Fortune theatre. I hope you have your tissues handy!”
Operation Mincemeat is presented in the West End by Avalon (in association with SpitLip), who have supported since the Southwark Playhouse runs. The show was commissioned by New Diorama Theatre, co-commissioned by The Lowry, and also supported by the Rhinebeck Writers Retreat.