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New stage for The Enemy's hit album

Remember The Enemy - Coventry's album chart-topping sensations of 2007?

Former Finham Park schoolboy Tom Clarke and his band were an overnight sensation with their debut album, We'll Live and Die in These Towns.

It went straight to number one in the UK album chart and secured them a national tour. And their follow-up, Music for the People, hit the number two spot.

Now the Belgrade Theatre has agreed to stage a new play by Geoff Thompson, the local man who won a Bafta nomination for his film Bouncers, starring Ray Winstone. He later wrote a rock musical Fragile, which was well received at the Edinburgh Festival.

Geoff has been inspired to use the music from We'll Live and Die in These Towns as the backdrop for his bio-play about The Enemy, three young lads caught in the crossfire of fame and as bemused by it all as everybody else.

The Belgrade's artistic director Hamish Glenn admits he wasn't familiar with the band's output, but after reading Geoff's script, he "snapped it up".

At a press launch at The Empire in Far Gosford Street, Hamish joined Tom Clarke and Geoff to announce that casting was about to start with the aim of premiering the musical in the B2 auditorium between September 29 and October 20. And Tom, the creative spirit behind The Enemy, is helping with the production.

If it goes well, the play could transfer into the main house or go on tour.

Geoff said the lyrics of We'll Live and Die in These Towns soaked into his bloodstream as a backdrop to his morning exercise routine. He still keeps fit after once working as a club doorman - an experience which added to the authenticity of his Bouncers film.

Indie rock bands are a slightly new departure for him, but he said: "There is something about the poetry and truth of that first album - it's a very Coventry story but also a universal story.

"After really listening, I approached Tom and his manager to ask about using the songs on We'll Live and Die in These Towns as the music for my play."

Tom said he did not feel remotely precious about someone else being creative around his music. He added: "Once you've released an album to the public and gone on tour with it, they aren't really your songs any more".

Pictured are Geoff Thompson (left), Tom Clarke and Hamish Glenn.

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