Belle's Domain
Starlight Express

Matt King Race Marshalls - Derek and Angus, Trax 1 and 2.

Every race needs race marshalls to enforce the rules of the race, to signal the start and name the winner, and generally skate around waving flags. The marshalls never had any particular character beyond being efficient, obedient to Control, and somewhat officious. At one point, while watching the london show, Thingywot decided that the Marshall with the red flag was Derek, and carrying green was Angus. Somehow the names seemed so appropriate, they've stuck.

When the 2nd US tour was set up in 2003, with pre-recorded races, it was decided to introduce a inline-skater character to perform tricks which the quad skaters could not manage. This was Trax, designated a race marshall. Tho, it must be said, as a Marshall sent to check the track before the race, he doesn't do a very good job- those pre-recorded races are full of hazards! When the 2004 UK tour grew out of the US production, the show gained a second Trax - stunt skater, skating in quads and also playing the Prince of Wales. In 2005, the german production followed and introduced two trick inline-skaters, Trax 1 and 2, and the potential of the stunt skaters was fully realised on the huge purpose-built set. While casting no ill on the skaters on the US and UK tours, the limitations of the touring sets meant that they simply didn't have the space to really show off in the way the German Traxes do.

The use of inline skates in Starlight Express has always been contentious. Apparently during the london 1992 revamp they experimented with performing on blades, but it was simply impossible to teach and perform the choreography. In the UK tour Trax has very little stage time, he does not participate in most of the ensemble numbers as what is possible in blades differs so much from what is possible in quads. Ironically Starlight Express has finally found a way to introduce the Inline technology which overtook the Quads so entirely in the 1990s, just as traditional quad skates become retro-highly fashionable and blades are less cool!

The only difference between Marshall costumes and GB's Gang is a flourescent yellow vest and matching kneepads in london costumes. Trax costumes were produced by liberally painting a black unitard with the yellow paint, and accessorising with gang pads. The only time you'd normally catch the Marshalls in front of a camera is at the start or finish of a race.

Backstage london Leo Bidwell Craig Scott
Bochum Trax

ONSTAGE Marshalls

London 1980s London 1992
US Productions
On the far right... Broadway, 1987 Broadway, 1987 US Tour, 1989
US Tour, 1989 US Tour, 1989
UK Tour
UK Tour, 2005
Bochum, Germany
Bochum, 1988 Bochum, 1998 Bochum, 1998
Bochum, 2005 Bochum, 2005