Synopsis and Songs
Never Forget the Musical uses the hit songs of Take That – the biggest all-male group to come out of the UK since The Beatles. Focusing on themes including love, betrayal and ambition, Never Forget traces the ficitional story of members of a Take That tribute band, interweaving the biggest hits from the group. So what exactly is the story about?
The story begins with Ash Sherwood. As a struggling singer-songwriter in Manchester, he has big ambitions, yet puts these on hold as he proposes to his girlfriend Chloe who accepts. They then have an engagement party. Ash soon finds out that his mother’s pub has mounting debts and is under threat for closure, so he sets out to save it by raising money. He does so by recruiting the help of his best friend Jake Turner who both decide to audition for a Take That tribute band, who plan to enter the Battle of the Tribute Bands competition. Ash and Jake land the roles along with three others – Adrian, Dirty Harry and Jose, and band rehearsals soon begin.
Back in the pub, Ash’s mother Babs has received her final eviction notice. Ash promises her that he will save her belove business with his competition winnings, if they win, yet meanwhile, his fiancee is busy planning the perfect wedding. Babs tries to convince her son that the money would be better spent on the wedding than her failing pub.
The next day, the boys are at the gym working with their choreographer and backing dancers. An argument soon occurs between the band members and the choreographer as she calls them amateurs, and this argument then turns into a dance-off. The group’s manager Ron enters and sees them all messing around, so he angrily tells them to be dedicated whilst making them sign his contract. Ron also lets the boys know that they will be doing their first gig at a local pub in Salford the following night.
So the next night, four of the boys lose their confidence in front of their first audience, leaving Ash alone in the spotlight to sing. The others, however, are inspired by this confidence and join him. It is too late however, as Ash has been spotting by a record producer, Annie who offers him a solo contract. Ash tries to convince her to take on the other members as well.
Ash’s Stag Night coincides with his fiances Hen Do, and Babs convinces the two parties to join forces. Record producer Annie also turns up, who makes it clear that she is after much more than just his singing talent. Ash cannot convince her to take on the other four boys in the deal and his jealous fiancee throws her drink at Annie, causing an argument between the engaged couple to errupt. Ash has to make the tough decision between a solo career and his loyalty to his friends and fiancee.
The next day at the pub, Chloe tells the rest of the group about Annie’s secret offer to Ash. Ash then arrives to tell them that he has decided to take the offer and leave them behind, causing his fiancee to call of their wedding plans.
The second half of the show opens with the remaining four band members tap dancing without Ash. Backstage, Chloe decides she will fill in her ex’s space and join the band, and the members, happy with this decision, go to visit Ash to make amends. Ash is busy rehearsing in a TV studio with his new dancers when the boy enter and interrupt. The boys make up but accidentally reveal that Chloe has replaced Ash in the band, causing him to be jealous.
Once rehearsals are over, producer Annie takes out Ash for a drink to discuss his career. Annie ends up taking Ash to a pole dancing club to seduce him, going back to his flat that night. Chloe appears the next morning to try to resolve their problems yet spots Annie, half dressed. Chloe flees the scene, distraught.
Backstage in Ash’s dressing room, he prepares to perform his own entry for the Battle of the Bands competition. After a telling-off from his mother about his recent behaviour, Annie then enters, causing an argument between the two women. Annie reveals that there is no money for Ash and Babs reveals that the pub is gone and it’s too late to save it. Both of them leave the scene, with Ash alone.
Meanwhile, the four boys are in their dressing room preparing for their own performance in the competition. Ash joins them, asking to come back into the tribute band. They agree and let him back in, and Chloe then discovers that she is out of the group. The band then perform in the competition, with Chloe joining them in Relight My Fire, singing the parts that singer Lulu made famous in the original song. The winners are announced, with the group winning the competition. Outside of the competition venue, Ash tries to speak with his ex-fiancee Chloe, and they reconcile.
The final scene of the musical shows Ash and Chloe’s wedding. A children’s choir sing and the couple get married before the title song Never Forget is sung.
- Overture: (Never Forget)
- Could It Be Magic
- Never Forget
- Take That and Party
- It Only Takes a Minute
- Do What U Like
- Back for Good/Never Forget
- I Found Heaven
- Every Guy
- Once You’ve Tasted Love
- Love Ain’t Here Anymore
- Never Forget (reprise)
- Relight My Fire
- A Million Love Songs
- Never Forget
- Never Forget Remix