Charlotte Church to judge Over the Rainbow

Charlotte Church to judge Over the Rainbow
Charlotte Church to judge Over the Rainbow (Image credit: PA Archive/Press Association Ima)

Singer Charlotte Church and EastEnders star John Partridge have been confirmed as two of the judges for Andrew Lloyd Webber's new talent search Over The Rainbow. Actress Sheila Hancock completes the judging panel as Andrew kicks off the hunt for a Dorothy to star in the West End production next year. Over The Rainbow will be hosted by Graham Norton, who previously fronted Andrew's other BBC talent shows, How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria?, Any Dream Will Do and I'd Do Anything. Of the panel, Andrew said: "Each member of the panel brings something new and exciting which will take Over The Rainbow even further than the previous shows. "We have a fantastic wealth of talent within our judges, and I know they're going to be bringing some incredibly valuable expertise and opinions in our search for Dorothy." John, who plays Christian Clarke in the BBC1 soap, said: "Musical theatre has been always been my first love - it's where I began my career - so I'm hugely excited to be joining the panel. I can't wait to work with Andrew again and see what talent the country has to offer." Charlotte described Andrew as an "icon" in the music industry and a personal "hero". Jay Hunt, BBC One controller, commented: "It is hard to find a team of judges who can match Andrew Lloyd Webber in terms of enthusiasm, knowledge and a love of musical theatre but I think we have got them here - they are going to be a huge asset to the show." Auditions for the show have already taken place in Glasgow, Cardiff, Belfast, Manchester and London. Over The Rainbow is due to air on BBC One next month. Click here to watch's weekly soaps video preview, the Soap Scoop

Patrick McLennan

Patrick McLennan is a London-based journalist and documentary maker who has worked as a writer, sub-editor, digital editor and TV producer in the UK and New Zealand. His CV includes spells as a news producer at the BBC and TVNZ, as well as web editor for Time Inc UK. He has produced TV news and entertainment features on personalities as diverse as Nick Cave, Tom Hardy, Clive James, Jodie Marsh and Kevin Bacon and he co-produced and directed The Ponds, which has screened in UK cinemas, BBC Four and is currently available on Netflix. 

An entertainment writer with a diverse taste in TV and film, he lists Seinfeld, The Sopranos, The Chase, The Thick of It and Detectorists among his favourite shows, but steers well clear of most sci-fi.