Nobody has come through the ranks quite as forcibly as the brilliant Killian Donnelly in the last few years.Starting with his lead role in The Commitments (after previous supporting stints in Les Miserables, The Phantom of the Opera and Billy Elliot) in 2013, he wowed in Memphis in 2014 and then Kinky Boots in 2016. What I love about Donnelly is his apparent regular guy-next-door ordinariness – yet the moment he appears on stage he ignites it with an extraordinary voice and moves. Here's a leading man of the old school with his tall, dreamy looks and dimpled charm, but also with washboard abs of the new school that were shown to full effect as he emerged from a pool in English National Opera's Sunset Boulevard last year, which he is about to reprise on Broadway next month.Alison ran into serious trouble in series one when she got unwillingly involved in a profiteering scheme, forced to doctor dodgy books for corrupt businessmen.
Richard's wife spotted them together, though, and said she'd divorce him and name Laura as the co-respondant.
It's been nearly two years since I last compiled a list of my favourite leading men of musicals in Britain.
In that survey, I mentioned that Philip Quast – a three-time Olivier award winner and one of my all-time favourite leading men – was missing in action, as he'd returned to his native Australia.
They've not yet built up a body of work to make this list, though surely they will one day if they go on as they've started.
Here are my current contenders for favourite leading men in musicals, plus a few I'm keeping my eye on...