Blood Brothers



  • A long-running musical by Willy Russell. BloodBrothers opened in 1983 at the Liverpool Playhouse and transferredto London, where it initially found no great success. However, the 1988revival was hailed by the critics and is still running at the PhoenixTheatre over 20 years later.

    The plot is based upon that of Dion Boucicault's popular melodramaThe Corsican Brothers (1852). Mrs Johnstone, a domestic, isexpecting twins after being deserted by her husband. Her employer Mrs Lyonsadopts one baby, and they agree to keep the two boys in ignorance since it issaid that twins parted at birth will die if they know the truth. In later lifeMickey Johnstone and Edward Lyons meet and become 'blood brothers'. They bothfall for the same girl, Linda, who marries Mickey. Edward attends college andbecomes a councillor, while Mickey loses his job and is jailed after turningto crime. When released, he becomes addicted to tranquillizers. Edward findshim a job and a house, but Mrs Lyons informs Mickey that his wife is having anaffair with Edward. Mickey walks into a meeting his twin is attending andfatally shoots him before he in turn is shot by the police.

    Russell's songs include 'Marilyn Monroe', 'Shoes upon the Table', and'My Child'.