Bauer taps into love of musicals with new Magic station

Presenters include Ruthie Henshall and Alfie Boe.

Royal Albert Hall: will host Magic at the Musicals Live event
Royal Albert Hall: will host Magic at the Musicals Live event

Bauer Media is extending the Magic brand into a new station dedicated to musicals, aptly named Magic at the Musicals.

The station is going live next Thursday (21 November) on DAB+ in London, the east and south east, and nationwide online via apps and smart speakers.

Bauer has lined up presenting talent including West End star Ruthie Henshall, as well as Jonathan Bailey, Alfie Boe, Louise Dearman, Luke Evans and John Owen-Jones.

Content will span show tunes, interviews with performers and industry players, and behind-the-curtain looks at the genre. Programmes will include weekday backstage interviews with musical stars, hosted by Alice Arnold, behind-the-scenes looks with Henshall at 2pm on Saturdays and weekday matinee performances from 2pm.

Magic at the Musicals will feature a playlist including And I Am Telling You I'm not Going from Dreamgirls, Defying Gravity from Wicked, Memory from Cats, Bring Him Home from Les Misérables, as well as hits from the likes of Mamma Mia! and Singin’ in the Rain.

The station will also broadcast from the Olivier Awards and host its own Magic at the Musicals Live event at the Royal Albert Hall in May 2020.

Steve Parkinson, Bauer’s group managing director for national radio, said: "Magic at the Musicals will celebrate the dynamic world of musical theatre – from the favourite classics to the latest West End and Broadway hits – and we’ll reflect the growing number of new and reimagined musicals on the silver screen.

"This latest addition from the Magic stable will offer targeted access to a premium and distinctive audience of musical-loving fans of all ages. It will of course build on our close association with the Society of London Theatre and many of the productions in London and around the country."

In recent years, musicals have enjoyed a resurgence transcending the stage, with films such as The Greatest Showman, La La Land and Cats, as well as biopics about musicians, including Rocketman and Bohemian Rhapsody.

Bauer said theatre attendance has grown to 34.5 million people annually – an increase of 2.2 million in the past five years.

Magic at the Musicals marks Bauer’s fourth launch this year.

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