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Friday, 10 August, 2001, 11:42 GMT 12:42 UK
Boy George pens West End musical
Boy George
Boy George has written lyrics and music to new show
Pop star and DJ Boy George has written a West End musical based on his own experience of finding fame in the 80s era of New Romantics.

The Culture Club frontman has launched a search to find singers and actors to play himself and other notable characters from the period.

His musical, Taboo, is written from own perspective as he and the rest of the group struggled to make a name for themselves.

Culture Club
Culture Club notched up two number one singles

The music of the early 1980s is famed for its then revolutionary use of synthesisers, drum machines and samplers, as well as its men in makeup.

Other 80s stars to be depicted in the show include Visage's Steve Strange, music promoter Philip Sallon and the androgynous Marilyn.

Boy George is also looking for an actor to play the flamboyant Australian designer and performance artist Leigh Bowery, who died of an Aids-related illness in 1994.

Casting directors are seeking an actor "larger than life in character and personality" to play him at an open audition in London on Friday.

Drug addict

Boy George is among several artists from the New Romantic period to have maintained his musical career, along with ABC's Martin Fry and the Human League.

As well as continuing with his own music and touring with a reformed Culture Club, he has become a successful and well-paid club DJ.

Boy George
Boy George is not known for his conservative dress sense

But his personal life has been far from smooth as heroin addiction controlled him through much of his heyday.

Boy George chronicled his fight against drugs in his 1995 autobiography Take it Like a Man.

He has since published his own cookery book.

Taboo will be staged at the Notre Dame Hall, a small venue off Leicester Square next to the former club from which the musical takes its name.

It will feature a host of new songs written by Boy George as well as Culture Club's number one singles, Do You Really Want to Hurt Me and Karma Chameleon.

Boy George is following in the footsteps of pop duo The Pet Shop Boys, whose musical Closer to Heaven premièred in the West End in May.

The BBC's Jane Goddard
joins the young hopefuls auditioning for the musical
See also:

06 Apr 01 | Entertainment
George's glamour goes on
17 May 01 | Music
Fry gets romantic about the 80s
03 Aug 98 | Entertainment
Let's hear it once again for the Eighties
11 May 00 | Scotland
Souter and Boy George clash
16 Dec 99 | Entertainment
Boy George survives falling glitter ball
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