Sad news came through this morning that Alan Burke the writer of the Book for Lola Montez passed away overnight in Sydney's Royal North Shore Hospital.

I had the great pleasure of attending a production of Lola Montez with Alan, Peter Stannard and Peter Benjamin in regional New South Wales just a few years ago.

Lola Montez was first staged by the Elizabethan Theatre Trust in the 1950's and has been staged by more than 100 theatres since - including a record 12 productions in 1988.

The musical includes the most recorded song in Australian musical theatre history Be My Saturday Girl.

Alan was a very charming man. I visited him several times in his smokey apartment in Artarmon on Sydney's north shore. It was walking distance from the ABC TV studios at Gore Hill where he used to work.

Archives from the production abounded.

He maintained his enthusiasm for Lola Montez his favourite musical theatre project into his 80's.

Alan will be sorely missed.

For funeral details contact Michael Shrimpton