But before the music, there was talking to be done... in G Live's intimate Studio space, in front of 100 or so people (mainly of the female persuasion, it has to be said!), Eagle Radio's Lewis Mason posed the questions, later opening things up to the floor, and allowed Lee plenty of time to take the answers wherever he chose. The result was a really interesting 'behind the scenes' insight into the life and times and future plans of Lee Mead. The interview has been released (almost unedited as far as I can hear) as a 'Curtain Call' podcast on Eagle Radio's website.
My thanks to Phil Cowndley Photography for these great photos from the Q&A:
It was a delectable appetiser for the main event which was graced with the same supremely talented band line-up as at Horsham (slightly modified from the earlier tour dates):
- MD, Mason Neely, on drums and acoustic guitar
- Will Stuart on keyboards and
- Neil Charles (his surname no longer a mystery to me!) on bass
- Lee's former Joseph co-star, the Narrator at the start of the Adelphi run, Preeya Kalidas
- his current Casualty colleague, Amanda Henderson, and
- recent graduate of Guildford's PPA and Alan A Dale to Lee's Robin in panto last Christmas, Norton James.
New guests brought new material - from Preeya, two solos in the first half and a duet with Lee in the second, so new that a music stand (presumably complete with music and lyrics!) was brought on 'just in case'. The lack of rehearsal time was far from evident as the two sang Maroon 5's 'She Will Be Loved' , their voices blending beautifully. From Norton, came a powerfully-sung 'Stars' from Les Miserables, and from Lee himself, a return to the solo version of 'Luck Be A Lady' that he has more often sung as a duet on this tour.
With Lee surrounded by friends and on his summer break from Casualty (thank you Lee for squeezing in a couple of gigs into your heard-earned holiday time!), there was something of an end-of-term vibe - and the audience were happy to embrace it, wringing every last ounce of enjoyment from the evening and leaving with beaming smiles on their faces.
This fantastic 2014 tour, in my opinion Lee's best yet, is now half-way through and the gap to the next concert, at Hafren, Newtown on Saturday 20 September, is the longest of the tour... plenty of time to save your pennies and plan a trip if you haven't already got tickets!
As always, I include the full setlist and also share a few photos below, mostly my own, but my thanks also to the lovely Anne Stern for the last two. Click on any below to view full Gallery and enjoy!
Lee's full concert schedule (including past appearances) can be found at - CONCERT DATES
Last updated: 14 August 2014