Heels of Glory Creative team

Heels of Glory was written and is co-produced by the amazing team of charming and talented vintage cabaret songstress Tricity Vogue and award-winning composer Richard Link. It is directed by the accomplished international director Stephen Heatley.

WRITER Tricity Vogue

Tricity Vogue

Tricity is a cabaret performer, singersongwriter and ukulele player with a passion for vintage styling and modern sensibilities — and she enjoys the frisson she gets from putting those two things together. She's been bringing her saucy original songs to cabaret, burlesque and variety show line-ups all over the UK and Europe for over a decade, has half a dozen hit Edinburgh Fringe shows under her belt, and hosts the longest running ukulele night in London.

Tricity was named after her best friend's childhood fridge. He was saving it up to be his drag queen name when he grew up, but passed it on to her instead. Beneath Tricity's false eyelashes and red lipstick is an award-winning scriptwriter called Heather Tyrrell, who spent ten years working in television, on shows including the BBC's Byker Grove, Holby City, My Family and, yes, the Teletubbies.

Before she worked in television, Heather Tyrrell was studying for a PhD on Bollywood, which has provided huge inspiration for the joyously camp, comedic and melodramatic sensibilities of Heels of Glory.

Tricity has just published her first book, co-authored with Heels of Glory's official photographer, James Millar. Dinner At The Circus: A Month In France Under The Big Top is a photographic diary of their adventures with a French circus troupe in 2014. The first edition has already sold out.

COMPOSER Richard Link

Richard LinkPrior to moving to London in 2006, Richard worked as a music director, conductor and composer in Canada and the US. He has written music for 25 musicals and music or sound design for over 75 plays. Richard’s musicals have been performed across Canada and the US, in Europe, Australia and here in England. Recent performances of his scores and musicals include The Caucasian Chalk Circle (February 2016, Ridley College, Canada), Six Nights in Naples (London College of Music (November, 2015), and Alberto the Dancing Alligator (Kompany Family Theatre, Canada, October 2015).

Richard also has an extensive catalogue of sacred and secular songs and choral works which have been performed in churches, concert halls and cabaret venues around the world.

Richard’s music for film includes the Canadian National Film Board documentary Born at Home, and the feature film Blood Clan.

Upcoming productions include Six Nights in Naples in late June, a new musical with Kompany Family Theatre in October in Edmonton, Canada and a new score for Doctor Faustus that will be performed in November at Ridley College, Canada.

Richard currently lectures in Musical Theatre at the London College of Music.

DIRECTOR Stephen Heatley

Stephen HeatleyStephen is a Canadian who has worked as a professional theatre director for over 40 years, directing more than 60 world premieres including several small musicals. During his 12-year stint as Artistic Director of Theatre Network in Edmonton, Alberta, he directed over 30 premiere productions.

He spent five years as Associate Artistic Director of the Citadel Theatre in Edmonton, was resident director with the Freewill Players Shakespeare Company for five years, and has directed for theatres across Canada in Victoria, Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, Saskatoon, Toronto, Blyth and Ottawa.

Stephen is the Head of the Department of Theatre and Film at the University of British Columbia where he works with actors, directors and playwrights. He lives in Vancouver with his partner, Tyler, and Maggie, their old but frisky cat.

His arches are too weak for heels but has a deep appreciation for their glamour potential.

What brought you all the way from Canada to direct Heels of Glory?

Well…Air Canada, actually. Other than that, the answer is multi-fold. To begin with, I am a huge fan of Richard Link — his music and his friendship. He and I have done many, many projects together since we met thirty-four years ago and they are among the things in my career that I have felt most creatively fulfilled by and have proven to be the most fun to do.

When Richard suggested that I come to London, capital of the English speaking theatre world, to work with him and Tricity on this project, what colonial kid would be able to say no?! Also, I have cut my teeth as a theatre director helping to develop small musicals and this one just sounded so intriguing. I feel lucky to be on board with such a great creative team.

Why did you want to come back and do it again after you directed the research and development of the show in January 2015?

I was amazed by the extraordinary things we accomplished in almost no time last year, so the idea that I could be a part of helping to take the show one step further along its developmental path was just too tantalizing. The sense of possibility after last year’s presentation was palpable and my attitude was, “I’m doing this again no matter what!” Once bitten by the exciting potential of any theatre project, it is hard to get it out of your bloodstream. So, I have been infected by the Heels of Glory bug and am glad to be under the influence of Allura, Splendorella and the whole La Douche crowd yet again this year.

What is the most interesting challenge for you in directing the show?

In this madcap world of La Douche, I am anxious to make sure that the story has some kind of emotional through-line while at the same time creating and maintaining the highly theatrical, clownesque, slightly wacky theatrical world the show demands. That has been a great challenge but a challenge worth pursuing.

The show is a hybrid of different performance genres — musical theatre, drag, cabaret and clowning. Does this combination work?

Why wouldn’t it? And don’t forget, it has a touch of panto as well. We have also had moments in rehearsal where we have talked about the piece as if it were emotional realism a la Chekhov.

A play operates under its own rules which are established by the writers. Our job as interpreters is to find the theatrical truth in each moment. Our truths just happen to come in a lot of different shapes, sizes and genres.

What’s been your favourite Heels of Glory moment so far?

I loved discovering through the brilliance of the performers the theatrical gold that is the henchmen, how they can be guards and drag queens and furniture movers and interested/ disinterested parties and whatever they need to be to keep the play and La Douche running. I have loved the discovery of new ideas in rehearsal and then watched them ripple their way throughout the entire play. I have loved how each actor has come into their role and made it uniquely their own as well as integral to the whole. I have loved the spontaneous laughter in the rehearsals and the crazy wild response of the audience in our last outing.

What do you think will happen to the show next?

To quote Tricity Vogue, “Today, World’s End; tomorrow, the West End!” I have been asked many times by Canadian friends if the show will come to Vancouver. I keep telling them, “Yes. After the Palladium run.”

Copyright © 2013-2016 Heather Tyrrell and Richard Link