Singing star John surprises Ipswich mum

A MUSICAL-mad mum-of-two is to have her performing dreams come true after being surprised by West End and TV's Torchwood star John Barrowman.

A MUSICAL-mad mum-of-two is to have her performing dreams come true after being surprised by West End and TV's Torchwood star John Barrowman.

Samantha Horsfield, a member of the Ipswich Operatic and Dramatic Society (IODS) met the actor-singer when he unexpectedly walked in to a rehearsal of the society's latest production The Producers.

Mrs Horsfield, 40, who is assistant director of The Producers, will perform with the cast of Mamma Mia on new BBC One show Tonight's The Night hosted by the star.

A BBC spokesman said Mrs Horsfield, who was nominated for the show by her husband Pete, has the perfect personality for the performance.

He added: “Samantha is the main carer for her 11-year-old twins who are both autistic. Twins, Kate and Sam were diagnosed with autism at the age of two.

“She is passionate about raising awareness about autism and through word of mouth she has unofficially become someone that gets in touch with parents that have just been told their child has autism.

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“The only thing that gives Samantha some respite and keeps her going is her love of musical theatre. She loves singing and has appeared in several theatre productions.”

The episode featuring Mrs Horsfield is scheduled for May 9.

The spokesman added: “Samantha loves musical theatre so much that in one year she saw 25 shows. Even the week after she got married they went to London and saw four shows in five days.

“Samantha is an outgoing, inspirational woman who has the perfect personality for a Mamma Mia performance. She also loves John Barrowman.”

Hosted by Barrowman and with the first episode on April 18 at 6.55pm, Tonight's The Night combines show-stopping acts from world class artists with once-in-a-lifetime performances that make people's dreams come true.

Speaking about the show Barrowman said: “As well as being packed with showbiz razzle-dazzle and celebrity guests, I'm really looking forward to finding the unlikely stars out there, putting a little extra sparkle in their life and helping them realise their dreams.

“It's pure entertainment and all about making people's wishes come true.”

The Producers will be performed at the Regent from June 17 to 20. Tickets are �16 and �14 and are available from the Ipswich Regent box office on 01473 433100.

Are you a fan of IODS? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send an e-mail to

John featured in the 2005 film version of Mel Brooks' The Producers.

The Producers tells the story of failing theatre producer Max and former accountant Leo who concoct a plan to raise two million dollars for a theatrical production that must fail.

To be sure of a flop, they choose a musical with cheerful numbers about Adolf Hitler and the Nazis.

After the failure of the show, Max and Leo will take the surplus cash and go to Rio but unfortunately for them, the production is a rip-roaring success.

John was born in Glasgow on March 11 1967.

When he was eight years old, the Barrowman family moved to Aurora, Illinois.

He became interested in acting and performing as a teenager.

John was cast as Billy Crocker in Cole Porter's Anything Goes, opposite Elaine Paige - it was his big break.

In 2005, John appeared in the role that of Captain Jack Harkness in the BBC show Doctor Who - a role which expanded to become the lead in the spin-off show Torchwood.

John Barrowman is due to appear at Ipswich's Regent Theatre on May 20.