July 7, 2010
Star-studded opening night set for La Bete
The much anticipated revival of comedy La Bete will have its premiere tonight at the Comedy Theatre in London.
An all-star cast features US theatre and TV star David Hyde Pierce (Frasier), recent Olivier Award winner Mark Rylance (Jerusalem), and veritable national treasure Joanna Lumley (Absolutely Fabulous). The play is directed by acclaimed, Tony award winning director Matthew Warchus and will run at the Comedy Theatre for a short season until 28 August before moving straight to Broadway.
American playwright David Hirson’s rollicking 1991 play, is a comic tour de force about Elomire (David Hyde Pierce), a high-minded classical dramatist who loves only the theatre, and Valere (Mark Rylance), a low-brow street clown who loves only himself. When the fickle princess (Joanna Lumley) decides she’s grown weary of Elomire’s royal theatre troupe, he and Valere are left fighting for survival as art squares off with ego in a literary showdown for the ages.
Other cast include Stephen Ouimette, Lisa Joyce, Greta Lee, Robert Lonsdale, Michael Milligan, Liza Sadovy and Sally Wingert.
ALSO OPENING THIS WEEK:
Wolfboy is a dark and disturbing tale of two troubled teenage boys locked in an asylum for their own good. Bernie has attempted suicide; David may or may not have the powers of a wolf. For them the outside world is a frightening place of abuse and violence. Bernie’s brother Christian and Cherry the young nurse on the unit, also hide secrets that surface in the night, when the moon is full.
This new musical premiered at the Edinburgh Festival fringe last year and has a book by Russell Labey, music and lyrics by Leon Parris and is based on a play by Brad Fraser. Labey previously directed New Boy at Trafalgar Studios in 2009, while Parris has won the Vivian Ellis Award for Best Musical, Really Useful Group Award for Most Promising Writer and the Cameron Mackintosh Bursary.
June 28, 2010
New shows opening in London this summer
Spring and autumn may be the busiest times for new shows in London, but this summer will still pack quite a punch with some big names, high-profile directors and a few surprises in store.
A range of musicals and plays will open in the capital over the next few months, including classic musicals from Stephen Sondheim (Into the Woods) and Rogers & Hammerstein (State Fair); starry comedy, including David Hyde Pearce and Joanna Lumley in La Bete, Jeff Goldblum in The Prisoner of Second Avenue and Simon Russell Beal and Jonathan Groff in Deathtrap); dance spectaculars (Burn the Floor), new musicals (Wolfboy), ambitious children’s drama (The Railway Children) and a terrifying new play (Ghost Stories).
June 1, 2010
Emma Rigby and Daniel Boys in Wolfboy; Ray Quinn to strut his stuff in Dirty Dancing at the Aldwych Theatre; Russ Abbot takes over from Griff Rhys Jones in Oliver!
Former Hollyoaks star Emma Rigby and recent Avenue Q lead Daniel Boys will appear at the Trafalgar Studios this summer to star in the psycho-sexual musical thriller Wolfboy (6 – 31 July).
The new musical premiered at the Edinburgh Festival fringe last year and has a book by Russell Labey, music and lyrics by Leon Parris and is based on a play by Brad Fraser.
The musical is a dark and disturbing tale of two troubled teenage boys locked in an asylum for their own good. Bernie has attempted suicide; David may or may not have the powers of a wolf. For them the outside world is a frightening place of abuse and violence. Bernie’s brother Christian and Cherry the young nurse on the unit, also hide secrets that surface in the night, when the moon is full.
Emma Rigby won a Best Actress British Soap Award in 2008 for her role on TV’s Hollyoaks playing Hannah Ashworth.
Daniel Boys appeared on BBC talent show Any Dream Will Do in 2007 and has since performed in a number of concerts and events including a special guest artist on John Barowman’s UK tour, and is a regular on BBC Radio 2′s Friday Night is Music Night.
The cast also includes Paul Holowaty and Gregg Lowe.
X Factor and Dancing on Ice star Ray Quinn is to join the cast of Dirty Dancing at the Aldwych Theatre this summer, from 26 July to 27 November 2010.
Quinn, who recently appeared as Danny in Grease at the Piccadilly Theatre, will play the role of Billy Kostecki, Johnny Castle’s cousin, in the show for a limited season from 26 July. He will sing two iconic songs from the show – “Do You Love Me?” and “(I’ve Had) the Time of My Life”.
Other cast includes Martin Harvey as Johnny Castle and Hannah Vassallo as Baby.
Dirty Dancing is now in its fourth year at the Aldwych Theatre and brings the action and music of the iconic film to the stage.
He stepped in for Rowan Atkinson last year and proved such a hit that Russ Abbot is to make his return to the Theatre Royal Drury Lane in June, starring as Fagin in Cameron Mackintosh’s big-budget production of Oliver!
Taking over the role from Griff Rhys Jones from 14 June, Abbot will join Kerry Ellis as Nancy, Steven Hartley as Bill Sikes and Stephen Moore as Mr Brownlow.
No stranger to the role of Fagin, Abbot played the part in Mackintosh’s 1997 revival of the show at the London Palladium and then on tour. The comedian and actor best known for his TV appearance including “The Russ Abbot Show” has also appeared in numerous musicals including My Fair Lady and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Doctor Dolittle and The Producers.
LEND ME A TENOR
Sally Ann Triplett and Matthew Kelly are to star in a new production of Lend Me a Tenor the Musical this autumn. The show will run at the Theatre Royal Plymouth from 24 September and then transfer to the West End (theatre to be announced).
Peter Sham and Brad Carroll’s musical, based on Ken Ludwig’s comedy, will be directed by Ian Talbot.
Other cast members include Damian Humbley and Michael Matus.
Links: Theatre Royal Plymouth