BBC Radio 2 will air a new show this month which promises to bring together the storytelling musical style of Glee with hits from the beginning of the Britpop era.
Shout To The Top is the brainchild of Radio 2 and 6Music playlist boss Jeff Smith, and has been written by ex-Farm drummer Roy Boulter and former Sleeper singer Louise Wener.
Smith describes the drama as a grittier "Glee for an older audience”. Its cast is led by an all-female band played by Hannah Arterton, Fiona Macrae and Samantha Robinson. EastEnders actor Shane Ritchie will also star.
Smith told The Stage that the initial 60-minute pilot would include songs such as Eurythmics’ Sweet Dreams and Prefab Sprout’s When Love Breaks Down, as well as two original compositions. He hopes to extend the show's run to a six-part serial.
Shout To The Top's story takes place in the late '80s and charts the rise of an all-girl trio who emerge on the cusp of Britpop and become more successful than any of their real-life equivalents ever managed.
"My conceit was that bands such as Lush and Elastica never really achieved the promise people thought they would - but then, later on, bands like Coldplay became world famous acts, built, arguably, on Britpop," said Smith.
"The band in the drama become as big as Coldplay, and [the radio show] is the story behind their success.”
Richie plays the father of one of the band members in the drama and doesn't sing in the pilot.
Shout to the Top, directed by Toby Swift, will be broadcast on September 25.
Source: The Stage