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Bill Kenwright

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Years active
  
1960s–present

Name
  
Bill Kenwright


Partner
  
Jenny Seagrove (1994–)

Children
  
Lucy Kenwright

Bill Kenwright Exclusive Kevin Ratcliffe Bill Kenwright failures have

Born
  
4 September 1945 (age 78) (
1945-09-04
)
Liverpool, Lancashire, England

Occupation
  
Theatre and film producer, football club chairman, actor, singer

Website
  
Bill Kenwright Production

Role
  
Theatre Producer · kenwright.com

Spouse
  
Anouska Hempel (m. 1978–1980)

Books
  
Willy Russell, Travels with My Aunt

Movies and TV shows
  
Any Dream Will Do, Cheri, The Purifiers, Die - Mommie - Die!, Zoe

Similar People
  
Profiles

Bill kenwright


Bill Kenwright, CBE (born 4 September 1945) is a British West End theatre producer and film producer. He is also the chairman of Everton Football Club.

Contents

Bill Kenwright The Everton Board Thread Inc Bill Kenwright Blue Union

Kenwright was born in Liverpool, Lancashire, attended Booker Avenue County Primary School, and then Liverpool Institute High School from 1957 to 1964. He appeared in school productions (including Shylock in The Merchant of Venice) on the stage in the Mount Street building (predecessor to LIPA). He was also treasurer of the Christian Union at school.

Bill Kenwright Video Pranksters Phone Everton Chairman Bill Kenwright

Kenwright was a judge in the 2007 BBC1 television series Any Dream Will Do.

Bill Kenwright Bill Kenwright reveals he has been contacted by potential

Bill kenwright tiggy uk 1969


Theatre

Bill Kenwright EXCLUSIVE Bill Kenwright doing all he can to keep Roberto

Kenwright is one of the UK's most successful theatre producers, best known for the long-running West End hit Blood Brothers and the record-breaking tour of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Other productions have included West End runs of Whistle Down the Wind at the Palace Theatre, Festen in London, on a UK tour and on Broadway, The Big Life, Elmina's Kitchen, Scrooge – The Musical, The Night of the Iguana, A Few Good Men, A Man For All Seasons alongside UK tours of Jesus Christ Superstar, Tommy, Tell Me on a Sunday and This is Elvis. He produced the London revival of Cabaret at the Lyric Theatre in September 2006, starring Anna Maxwell Martin, James Dreyfus and Sheila Hancock.

Bill Kenwright There are a couple of groups talking to Bill Kenwright

He has helped start the careers of many current West End theatre producers, including Mark Rubinstein and Marc Sinden. It has been estimated that he employs more actors in a year than any employer other than the BBC.

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He has also directed many productions, including Blood Brothers, Whistle Down the Wind; he was asked by Andrew Lloyd Webber to make changes to the direction of Love Never Dies.

Current and recent productions, mainly musicals, include:

  • Fame - UK National Tour (2014)
  • Blood Brothers – Phoenix Theatre, London and on UK National Tour, starring Helen Hobson and Steven Houghton
  • Cabaret – Savoy Theatre, London with Will Young, Michelle Ryan and Sian Phillips
  • Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat – UK National Tour
  • The Wizard of OzLondon Palladium, London (2011)
  • Jekyll and Hyde – UK National Tour (2011)
  • Music

    Kenwright has his own record label (Bill Kenwright Records), which had released three albums as of February 2008. The London Palladium cast recording of Scrooge (starring Tommy Steele) and the 2006 Lyric Theatre Recording of Cabaret were joined in February 2008 by the debut album of Kenwright's new boy group Dream On.

    Dream On, comprising five runners up from the BBC's Any Dream Will Do – Craig Chalmers, Lewis Bradley, Chris Crosby, Chris Barton and Antony Hansen was formed in January 2008.

    He began his music career in a band known as the Chevrolets. Perhaps less known is Kenwright's recording career both solo and with a group Bill Kenwright and the Runaways:

  • "I want to go back there again"/"Walk through dreams" Columbia DB8239 (August 1967)
  • and solo, as Bill Kenwright:

  • "Love's Black & White"/"Giving Up" MGM 1430 (July 1968)
  • "Tiggy"/"House That Fell on its Face" MGM 1463 (November 1968)
  • "Baby I Could Be So Good at Loving"/"Boy & a Girl" MGM 1478 (January 1969)
  • "Sugar Man"/"Epitaph"/"When Times Were Good" Fontana TF 1065 (October 1969)
  • Kenwright tried his hand at record production in 1969, producing two singles for Manchester band Money, who also worked as his backing band for several cabaret gigs in Oldham and at Allinson's, Liverpool. The first record, "Come Laughing Home", was the title music for Kenwright's first foray into theatrical production, with Reginald Marsh (also a star of Coronation Street) as co-producer. The show starred Anne Reid, who at the time was playing Valerie Barlow in Coronation Street. It was the first time a Coronation Street star had worked in live theatre whilst still acting in the series. The show opened at Blackpool's Grand Theatre. The single was also released in Argentina.

    Actor

    As a young man he became an actor. His early successes included a role in Coronation Street as Gordon Clegg, who was introduced in April 1968. Kenwright left the show after a year to pursue his producing career in March 1969, although he did return to the show on occasion throughout the 1970s for guest appearances. He continued to star in Coronation Street occasionally until 2011. He had brief stints in other shows, such as The Villains and The Liver Birds, and appeared in the films Carry On Matron (1972), as a reporter, and England, My England (1995).

    Everton Football Club

    Kenwright is the current chairman of Everton Football Club. He succeeded Littlewoods director Philip Carter in the role. Kenwright has been on the Everton board since 1989. He became the second largest shareholder in 1999, when Peter Johnson sold his shareholding after the Football Association told to him sell his interests in either Tranmere Rovers or Everton. He became the largest stakeholder in the club in 2004.

    Scottish international forward Andy Gray reported in his autobiography that the Everton board were ready to offer Gray the job as manager in August 1997, but Kenwright, then director, had wanted to appoint Howard Kendall as manager for a third time. Gray would decide not to become Everton manager and Kendall was appointed.

    1994 buyout proposal

    Kenwright became involved in a consortium to buy Everton in 1994, as his consortium rivalled Birkenhead-based Peter Johnson. Kenwright's consortium had assurances from the Everton owner's family head Lady Grantchester that the Moores family would sell their stake in the club. Kenwright's proposal was dismissed as the "Manchester Consortium" in the Liverpool Echo, as the rivalry between Liverpool and Manchester was enough to deter supporters' support. Kenwright's consortium included Manchester-based Tom Cannon, Tony Tighe (who later went on to create the Everton Collection) and Mike Dyble, whilst building magnate Arthur Abercromby was Cheshire-based. Abercromby offered a £2 million interest-free loan to the club for the purchase of players.

    Kenwright, who had been a director at Everton for ten years, had an opportunity to sway the board members to accept his bid but chose not to because he did not want a public relations battle with the more affluent Johnson. Tighe, in an interview with a journalist David Conn, said: "Bill didn't want a public row, that's why he didn't go to press much. He wanted the board to be unanimous. As he saw it, he didn't want Everton's name to be dragged through controversy." Peter Johnson's bid was accepted by the Everton board. Johnson installed Kenwright (the half Belgian half English theatre impresario) as vice-chairman and Sir Philip Carter was re-instated as Chairman.

    1999 buyout proposal and True Blue Holdings

    Kenwright's consortium bought 68% of Everton F.C. from Peter Johnson for £20 million in 1999. A holding company called True Blue (Holdings) Ltd was formed in January 2000. The stakeholders in True Blue Holdings included Paul Gregg, Jimmy Mulville, Jon Woods and Willy Russell before it was dissolved in 2004. Mihir Bose reported that Anita Gregg lent up to £7 million to Kenwright. Upon completion of the deal, Kenwright said: "Acquiring Peter Johnson's shares is only the first step to restoring a great club to where it belongs – to where it should be. If you are going to run a successful football club you need two qualities: you need to be realistic and you need a plan. I'm realistic and I have a plan."

    In 2003, he attempted to move Everton to the Kings Dock on the riverside but after a public feud with director Paul Gregg over the proposal's finances and the sale of Wayne Rooney, the move fell through. Gregg had wanted to keep Rooney at the club and Kenwright reluctantly felt it was best he be sold to ease the club's financial burden. Paul and Anita Gregg later sold their shares to Florida-based businessman Robert Earl. Kenwright's close friend Philip Green is believed to have helped him secure the club after being approached for help.

    Chairmanship

    On 1 June 2004, Kenwright became chairman of Everton Football Club. On the same day, Trevor Birch was appointed Chief Executive Officer to replace the outgoing Michael Dunford. Kenwright said that Birch would be his "sounding board" and that the new CEO should "dictate the policy of the football club". Kenwright stated that Birch had not been brought in to sell the club, but that a new investor can have his shares as long as they "have money to run the club". Birch resigned six weeks later. He resigned after a meeting with True Blue Holding (Kenwright, Woods, Gregg and Abercromby) where the board opted to not to sell the club. Gregg claimed there was a refusal to relinquish control by other directors and that it was preventing progress at the club.

    Fortress Sports Fund

    In August 2004, it was reported that a Brunei-based fund Fortess Sports Fund (FSF) were interested in buying a stake in Everton. Following the public fall-out with director Paul Gregg, it was anticipated that Gregg's shares in addition to others would be sold to the fund. Kenwright and Everton director Jon Woods were in favour of accepting the investment whilst Paul Gregg was sceptical and refused to endorse it. Gregg believed that the fund under-valued his investment, it was reported that the fund's bid was £12.8 million for 29.9% of the club.

    In February 2005, Keith Wyness stated that the club had begun to look for other potential investors. In April 2005, Samuelson stated that "the Fund is completed and registered" but Everton director Paul Gregg publicly questioned the FSF: "As a director I have not received any proof of funds – or that they even exist." The Liverpool Echo described the FSF situation as a "farce". Paul Gregg stated that he had been "led down the garden path and that the whole exercise has embarrassed the club." Samuelson re-iterated that funds were ready; "The fund is approved and ready to go. I have not received the actual certificate of incorporation of the fund but that is a technicality." He stated that an EGM was necessary to confirm the FSF fund. "As far as I'm concerned it's a fait accompli – subject to the approval of an EGM of shareholders." An EGM was never called and the question of investment into Everton from the FSF fell away from the public eye.

    In November 2005, at the following AGM. Kenwright said that Samuelson "was someone who I believed could have come up with the money, he had his credentials and thought he could come up with a deal that was good for the club ... but he didn't, like many many other people, come up with the goods." He added: "I am spending 24 hours a day trying to raise finance for this club. I had a meeting today, three yesterday, all involving money that would dilute my shareholding – but I'm not interested in that."

    2004 Extraordinary General Meeting

    By September 2004, concerns amongst fans had grown about the future of the club. An Extraordinary General Meeting was called by shareholders; "The shareholders of the Company express their deep concern at the current state of affairs in the Company". It called for the board of directors to resign if they did not address previous motions to the satisfaction of shareholders Kenwright is considered approachable by fans and prior to the EGM he contacted a fan website before the press regarding the meeting.

    2007 Extraordinary General Meeting

    In 2007, Kenwright announced that he would like to move the club to Kirkby as part of a proposal known as Destination Kirkby which included a Tesco supermarket and a retail park. The pursuit of this project led to minor shareholders of the club calling for an Extraordinary General Meeting in 2008. After it was confirmed that the EGM would go ahead, Keith Wyness resigned and was replaced by Robert Elstone who was promoted to the position from within.

    At this meeting, Kenwright revealed that he took business advice from retail industry leaders Sir Philip Green and Sir Terry Leahy. The EGM vote determined that the club should not pursue the project due to a growing number of concerns.

    In April 2008, he agreed to produce Dixie: The People's Legend, a documentary on Everton legend Dixie Dean produced by Liverpool-based company Tabacula.

    Personal life

    Kenwright was married to actress Anouska Hempel from 1978 to 1980 and has a daughter and two grandchildren from his relationship with the actress Virginia Stride. He is currently in a long-term relationship with the actress Jenny Seagrove. They live in London. The West End theatre publicist Adam Kenwright is his nephew who runs advertising and marketing company aka. Adam worked with Kenwright before setting up on his own.

    Honours

    He received an Honorary Fellowship from Liverpool's John Moores University and is an Honorary Professor of University of West London in London.

    Kenwright was awarded the CBE for his services to film and theatre for 2001.

    In November 2008 he was awarded an Honorary degree of Doctor of Letters from Nottingham Trent University in recognition of his outstanding contribution and commitment to British theatre.

    On 3 January 2014, Kenwright appeared on the BBC show Pointless Celebrities. He and his partner Jenny Seagrove reached the final and won the Pointless trophy, but gave three incorrect answers and missed out on the £2,500 jackpot.

    Filmography

    Actor
    1968
    Coronation Street (TV Series) as
    Gordon Clegg
    2003
    Dream Team (TV Series) as
    Bill Kenwright
    - Saving Priceless Ryan (2003) - Bill Kenwright
    1995
    England, My England as
    Bill
    1975
    The ITV Play (TV Series) as
    Johnny Pratt
    - A House in Regent Place: Mrs Tycoon (1975) - Johnny Pratt
    1974
    The Zoo Gang (TV Series) as
    Mercier
    - The Lion Hunt (1974) - Mercier
    1973
    Thirty Minutes Worth (TV Series)
    - Episode #3.4 (1973)
    1969
    Dixon of Dock Green (TV Series) as
    West / Robert Wilton
    - Who Needs Enemies? (1972) - West
    - The Brimstone Man (1969) - Robert Wilton
    1972
    Carry on Matron as
    Reporter
    1972
    The Liver Birds (TV Series) as
    Joe Taylor
    - Liverpool or Everton (1972) - Joe Taylor
    1964
    Z Cars (TV Series) as
    Billie / Jimmy Fox / Terry
    - Team Work (1972) - Jimmy Fox
    - Gelignite: Part 2 (1967) - Billie
    - Gelignite: Part 1 (1967) - Billie
    - Welcome Home, Jigger (1964) - Terry
    1971
    Rules, Rules, Rules (TV Series) as
    Mickie Vernon
    - The Role of Hero (1971) - Mickie Vernon
    1970
    The Doctors (TV Series) as
    Norman
    - Episode #1.38 (1970) - Norman
    1968
    City '68 (TV Series) as
    Peter Ralston
    - The Old Country (1968) - Peter Ralston
    1967
    ITV Play of the Week (TV Series) as
    Ephraim Wharmby
    - Stories of D.H Lawrence #9: Strike Pay (1967) - Ephraim Wharmby
    1967
    The Fellows (TV Series) as
    Motor Cyclist
    - Inside Out: Part Two (1967) - Motor Cyclist
    1966
    ITV Sunday Night Drama (TV Series) as
    Modomnoc
    - Four Triumphant: St Patrick (1966) - Modomnoc
    1966
    Softly Softly (TV Series) as
    David Charles
    - Murder Reported (1966) - David Charles
    1966
    King of the River (TV Series) as
    Sammy
    - Flash Point (1966) - Sammy
    1964
    The Villains (TV Series) as
    Barry
    - Big Fleas Have Little Fleas (1964) - Barry
    1964
    Julius Caesar (TV Movie) as
    Officer
    Producer
    -
    Long Day's Journey Into Night (producer) (post-production)
    -
    My Sister's Bones (producer) (post-production)
    -
    Year 10 (producer) (post-production)
    2023
    The Kill Room (producer)
    2023
    The Critic (producer)
    2023
    The Shepherd (Short) (producer)
    2022
    Heathers: The Musical (TV Movie) (producer)
    2021
    My Night with Reg (producer)
    2021
    Off the Rails (producer - produced by)
    2021
    The Runner (producer)
    2019
    The Fanatic (producer)
    2018
    Peripheral (producer)
    2018
    Burden (producer)
    2017
    My Pure Land (producer)
    2017
    Another Mother's Son (producer)
    2016
    The Hope Rooms (Short) (producer)
    2012
    Broken (producer)
    2009
    Chéri (producer)
    2009
    Passing Strange (Documentary) (producer: original broadway production)
    2004
    The Purifiers (producer)
    2003
    The Boys & Girl from County Clare (executive producer)
    2003
    Die, Mommie, Die! (producer)
    2001
    Zoe (producer)
    1999
    Don't Go Breaking My Heart (producer)
    1991
    Stepping Out (executive producer)
    1987
    Even Break (Short) (producer)
    1986
    The Day After the Fair (TV Movie) (executive producer)
    Miscellaneous
    2012
    Broken (managing director: Bill Kenwright Films)
    1999
    Don't Go Breaking My Heart (presenter)
    1998
    Dancing at Lughnasa (associate producer: stage play)
    Composer
    2001
    Zoe
    Thanks
    2015
    Neil Sean Meets... (TV Series) (special thanks - 1 episode)
    - Tommy Steele (2015) - (special thanks - as Bill Kenwright CBE)
    2001
    Arena (TV Series documentary) (thanks - 1 episode)
    - Sykes and a Day (2001) - (thanks)
    Self
    2022
    Tommy Steele: The Great Entertainer (TV Special documentary) as
    Self
    2022
    Match of the Day FA Cup (TV Series) as
    Self - Spectator
    - 2021/22: Fourth Round Highlights (2022) - Self - Spectator (uncredited)
    2021
    Walter: A Life in Football (TV Special documentary) as
    Self - Everton Chairman
    2021
    Michael Crawford: Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em (TV Special documentary) as
    Self
    2012
    Piers Morgan's Life Stories (TV Series) as
    Self - Theatre Producer & Friend / Self
    - Michael Barrymore (2019) - Self - Theatre Producer & Friend
    - Felicity Kendal (2012) - Self
    2018
    BBC North West Tonight (TV Series) as
    Self - Director, Producer and Impresario
    - 24 April 2018: Evening Bulletin (2018) - Self - Director, Producer and Impresario
    2015
    Hippodromes, Empires and Palaces: Tales from the Golden Age of Variety (Video documentary short) as
    Self - Theatre Impresario (as Bill Kenwright CBE)
    2014
    Pointless Celebrities (TV Series) as
    Self - Contestant
    - Theatrical (2014) - Self - Contestant
    2013
    The Nation's Favourite Elvis Song (TV Movie documentary) as
    Self
    2013
    Final Score (TV Series) as
    Self - Spectator
    - Episode #13.7 (2013) - Self - Spectator (uncredited)
    - Episode #12.38 (2013) - Self - Spectator (uncredited)
    2013
    Eric Sykes: Orme Court (Documentary short) as
    Self
    2002
    Football Focus (TV Series) as
    Self / Self - Analyst
    - Episode #12.41 (2013) - Self
    - Episode #3.2 (2003) - Self - Analyst
    - Episode #1.34 (2002) - Self
    2013
    The Many Faces of... (TV Series documentary) as
    Self
    - Michael Crawford (2013) - Self
    2012
    Blackpool: Big Night Out (TV Movie documentary) as
    Self - Theatre Producer
    2012
    The Late Great Eric Sykes (TV Movie documentary) as
    Self
    2012
    The Corrie Years (TV Series documentary) as
    Self
    - The Scandals (2012) - Self (as Bill Kenwright CBE)
    2012
    The Story of Musicals (TV Series documentary) as
    Self
    - Episode #1.2 (2012) - Self
    2011
    The Betty Driver Story (TV Movie documentary) as
    Self (as Bill Kenwright CBE)
    2010
    Variety Club Showbiz Awards 2010 (TV Special) as
    Self - Presenter
    2010
    Breakfast (TV Series) as
    Self - Theatre Producer
    - Episode dated 17 August 2010 (2010) - Self - Theatre Producer
    2008
    Celebrity Mastermind (TV Series) as
    Self - Contender
    - 2007/2008: Episode 3 (2008) - Self - Contender
    2007
    The Winner's Story (TV Movie documentary) as
    Self
    2007
    When Joseph Met Maria (TV Movie) as
    Self - Performer
    2007
    Match of the Day 2 (TV Series) as
    Self - Chairman, Everton / Self
    - 2007/08: 4/11/07 (2007) - Self - Chairman, Everton
    - 2006/07: 14/1/07 (2007) - Self
    2007
    Who Wants to Be a Millionaire (TV Series) as
    Self - Contestant
    - Celebrity Special (2007) - Self - Contestant
    2007
    Any Dream Will Do (TV Series) as
    Self - Judge
    2006
    Legends (TV Series documentary) as
    Self
    - Petula Clark: Blue Lady (2006) - Self
    2006
    News 24 Sunday (TV Series) as
    Self
    - Episode #2.1 (2006) - Self
    2006
    The King's Head: A Maverick in London (Video documentary) as
    Self
    2005
    Best of the Beatles (Video documentary) as
    Self - Chairman: Everton FC
    2003
    The 100 Greatest Musicals (TV Movie documentary) as
    Self
    1981
    This Is Your Life (TV Series documentary) as
    Self
    - Anthony Andrews (2003) - Self
    - Jenny Seagrove (2002) - Self
    - Rita Tushingham (1999) - Self
    - Charlie Drake II (1995) - Self
    - Michael Denison & Dulcie Gray (1995) - Self
    - Bill Kenwright (1994) - Self
    - Peter Adamson (1981) - Self
    2002
    Football's True Colours (TV Movie documentary) as
    Self
    2002
    The Premiership (TV Series) as
    Self - Everton Vice Chairman
    - 2001/02: 16/3/02 (2002) - Self - Everton Vice Chairman
    2002
    Best of British (TV Series documentary) as
    Self
    - Leslie Phillips (2002) - Self
    2001
    Arena (TV Series documentary) as
    Self
    - Sykes and a Day (2001) - Self (scenes deleted)
    2001
    Life After the Street (TV Special) as
    Self
    2001
    The Unforgettable Kenneth Williams (TV Movie documentary) as
    Self
    1999
    Heroes of Comedy (TV Series documentary) as
    Self
    - Eric Sykes (1999) - Self
    1997
    True Blue and Broadway (Documentary short)
    1997
    The 51st Annual Tony Awards (TV Special) as
    Self - Winner
    1997
    Brunch (TV Series) as
    Self
    - Episode dated 11 May 1997 (1997) - Self
    1995
    The Street Party (TV Movie) as
    Self
    1995
    Littlejohn Live and Uncut (TV Series) as
    Self - Guest
    - Episode dated 19 May 1995 (1995) - Self - Guest
    1994
    Match of the Day (TV Series) as
    Self - Director, Everton
    - 1993/94: 7/5/94 (1994) - Self - Director, Everton
    1993
    The 47th Annual Tony Awards (TV Special) as
    Self - Nominee
    1986
    New Faces (TV Series) as
    Self - Panellist
    - New Faces of 86 Grand Final (1986) - Self - Panellist
    1970
    Aquarius (TV Series documentary) as
    Self
    - The Golden Harp/The Frank Muir Book (1976) - Self
    - Fanfare for Europe: Beethoven/St Pauls: Part 2 (1973) - Self
    - Margot Fonteyn/Natalia Makarova/National Youth Theatre/Much Too Soon (1970) - Self
    1971
    Anything You Can Do (TV Series) as
    Self
    - The Final - Channel v Grampian (1971) - Self
    1970
    Lift Off (TV Series) as
    Self
    - Episode #1.11 (1970) - Self
    1966
    Going to Work (TV Series documentary)
    - Trade Unions (1966)
    Archive Footage
    2018
    Granada Reports (TV Series) as
    Self - Chairman, Everton
    - 22 February 2018: Nightly Bulletin (2018) - Self - Chairman, Everton (uncredited)
    - 22 February 2018: Evening Bulletin (2018) - Self - Chairman, Everton (uncredited)
    2011
    Wonderland (TV Series documentary) as
    Self - 1986 Judge
    - I Had the X Factor- 25 Years Ago (2011) - Self - 1986 Judge
    2010
    The Stars of the Street: 50 Years, 50 Classic Characters (Video) as
    Gordon Clegg
    1981
    Carry on Laughing (TV Series) as
    Reporter
    - Episode #1.8 (1981) - Reporter

    References

    Bill Kenwright Wikipedia


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