3:15pm Wednesday 20th June 2007
MANY a toe has tapped to one of Andrew Lloyd Webber's catchy show tunes.
He is responsible for such musical greats as Cats, Starlight Express, Evita, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Sunset Boulevard, Phantom of the Opera and Jesus Christ Superstar.
His musicals have played to sell-out audiences on Broadway and on the West End.
In fact after more than two decades, Phantom is still running in London and is also playing at theatres in Budapest, Tokyo, Brazil and Seoul. The show - said to be based on his obsession with his ex-wife Sarah Brightman , who he cast in the lead role - has made more at the box office than any other film or show in history, including Titanic and Star Wars.
Lord Lloyd-Webber - who acquired his life peerage in 1997 - has won just about every award going from Tony, Grammy, Academy and Golden Globe awards to a Laurence Olivier award.
His Hampshire estate in Sydmonton is surrounded by the rolling countryside of Watership Down, made famous as the setting for Richard Adams' novel about rabbits fleeing the developers.
It is here Webber is believed to have penned the famous theme tune for Phantom.
More recently, Webber has captured the imagination of television audiences with his nationwide search for leading roles in two of his most popular musicals - The Sound of Music and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.
Millions tuned in to watch and vote for their favourite leading lady in the BBC's How Do You Solve a Problem like Maria and, this year, to vote for their favourite Joseph in the follow up show Any Dream Will Do.
Name: Andrew Lloyd Webber Occupation: Composer Date of birth: March 22, 1948 Local link: Has an estate in Sydmonton, North Hampshire
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