Victor Kazan and Kevin Purcell form the dynamic duo behind the creation of Castle Gillian: An Irish Tale. As one of Australia’s most seasoned and successful musical theatre writing teams, Kazan & Purcell have been collaborating for nearly three decades, creating four musicals with a fifth on the way. Their enduring partnership began in 1995, when British stage director Victor Kazan encountered Kevin Purcell, the musical director of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s CATS production, in a London pub. 

These creators are adept at penning timeless songs with contagious melodies and perceptive lyrics. Their music beautifully blends pop, classical, and cinematic sounds, creating captivating stories that resonate with audiences worldwide. As experienced professionals in the theatre industry, Kazan & Purcell both value the essence of storytelling and the magic of musical theatre to be transformative and life-changing. Their aim is to immerse audiences into the lives of multi-layered characters and lead them on astonishing journeys of discovery. 

L. Frank Baum’s The Wizard of Oz, the eponymous wizard proclaims, “Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!”  The goal for the men and women who write today’s musical theatre, the Wizard’s entreaty to look only at what is in front of the curtain remains ever true.

Writers of musicals paint on a very large blank canvas upon which designers, choreographers, directors, actors, musicians and very expert production personnel bring the story to life on the stage. When done successfully, no-one should ask, “How did they do that?” In the case of Castle Gillian: An Irish Tale, Kazan & Purcell have created a musical world that is in 360˚ with the audience placed right in the centre of the virtual stage.  But, take care, it is not the technology that is important or how it was conceived, but the way in which this quintessential Irish story is able to transport the audience straight into the lives and places of its protagonists.

So, pay no attention to the men behind the curtain, but pay close attention to the magic of the story they weave. Be drawn into the lives of multi-layered character avatars; inhabit wondrous worlds and travel through their personal and collective life journeys and, finally, witness how their stories reflect an uncanny relevancy to our own lives.

Kevin Purcell is a distinguished conductor and music director. He is currently the Principal Conductor for the Australian Discovery Orchestra. He maintains an active career as a musical director for theatre in the USA and UK. Kevin studied at the Moscow Conservatory of Music and the Janáček Academy of Music. As a much sought after orchestrator and arranger, he has received numerous distinguished awards for his work. He is a member of The Recording Academy and the Dramatists Guild. Kevin is managed by Fletcher Associates (UK) and William Reinert Associates, Inc. (USA).

Victor Kazan is a British playwright and screenwriter with a rich background in theatre, radio, film, and television, brings diverse experiences into the partnership. Born and educated in London, he shifted from acting to directing after gaining experience in various repertory companies. Kazan’s writing spans across various mediums, including film and TV scripts, revues, and even a trilogy. The themes and characters of his works display his deep understanding of human emotions and societal intricacies.

The Kazan & Purcell collaboration to date has birthed four musicals: Atlantis (1998), Rebecca (2004), The Stranger From Seville (2013 New York Music Theatre Festival Grand Jury Selection; 2018, 2nd. Florida Festival of New Musicals), and Castle Gillian (2022).

Quill & Quaver

Subscribe to Our Newsletter for Your Weekly Musical Journey

Join our newsletter and embark on a musical journey through Castle Gillian. Each week, we’ll gift you a piece of the magic – one song from the enchanting soundtrack of Castle Gillian, paired with its unique story. Discover the tales behind the tunes and gain exclusive insights into the world of Castle Gillian. Don’t miss a note of this captivating adventure!