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A Chorus Line – Round-up of reviews

February 23, 2013 

A round-up of reviews of A Chorus Line at the London Palladium.

A Chorus Line at the London Palladium

A Chorus Line at the London Palladium

Reviews are in for the major new revival of Tony award-winning Broadway musical A Chorus Line at the London Palladium, featuring the late Marvin Hamlisch’s score and a brand new production by Bob Avian.

Starring Scarlett Strallen as Cassie, Victoria Hamilton-Barritt as Diana, John Partridge as Zach and Leigh Zimmerman as Sheila, critics have been kind to the show, with most reviews raving about both the show and production.

In A Chorus Line, auditions are underway for a new Broadway musical. For everyone present, it’s the chance of a lifetime. It’s the one opportunity to do what they’ve always dreamed of – to have the chance to dance. Told through captivating song, riveting drama and stunning choreography, the auditionees describe the events that have shaped their lives and their decisions to become dancers.

Read reviews from The Guardian, Telegraph, Daily Mail and more.

Viewing this on a mobile or tablet? Click here to see the reviews

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Photos: A Chorus Line at the London Palladium

February 12, 2013 

Production photos of A Chorus Line at the London Palladium

A Chorus Line at the London Palladium. Photo: Roy Tan

A Chorus Line at the London Palladium. Photo: Roy Tan

A new revival of legendary Broadway musical A Chorus Line has started previews at the London Palladium, the first time the show has been in the West End since 1976.

Featuring classic songs including One Singular Sensation and Hope I Get It, the original 1975 Broadway production won 9 Tony Awards and the 1976 Pulitzer Prize for Drama.

The cast of this new London production includes Scarlett Strallen as Cassie, Victoria Hamilton-Barritt as Diana, John Partridge as Zach and Leigh Zimmerman as Sheila.

The West End revival of A Chorus Line is directed and choreographed by Bob Avian, who co-choreographed the original production alongside Michael Bennett. Avian also directed the 2006 New York revival of the show.

The show’s music is by Marvin Hamlisch with lyrics by Edward Kleban, and a book by James Kirkwood, Jr. and Nicholas Dante.

Photos by Roy Tan.

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Full Casting Is Announced For A Chorus Line At The London Palladium

January 5, 2013 

Victoria Hamilton-Barritt (Diana),  John Partridge (Zach), Scarlett Strallen (Cassie) and Leigh Zimmerman (Sheila)  will be joined by Lucy Adcock (Judy), Georgie Ashford (Trisha), Ed Currie (Bobby), Frances Dee (Kristine), Segun Fawole (Butch), Harry Francis (Mark),  Simon Hardwick (Al), Rebecca Herszenhon (Val), James  T Lane (Richie), Marc Leslie (Roy), Vicki Lee Taylor (Maggie), Daisy Maywood (Bebe), Alice Jane Murray (Lois), Alastair Postlethwaite (Larry), Andy Rees (Greg), Adam Salter (Mike), Alexzandra Sarmiento (Connie), Michael Steedon (Tom), Gary Watson (Don) and Gary Wood (Paul). Further casting includes  Rebecca Giocopazzi, Genevieve Nicole and Ashley Nottingham.

Alice Jane Murray and Marc Leslie were selected to join the cast of A Chorus Line from the open auditions that were held at the London Palladium back in September 2012. Selected from 2000 hopefuls, 19 year old Alice will be making her west end debut.

For the first time since its first London season, which opened in 1976 and won the Olivier Award for Best Musical, a full London revival of the Broadway Production will be staged at the London Palladium from February 5th 2013, with a press night  on Tuesday February 19th.

Following the announcement of a limited season through to July 2013, booking has now been extended to January 2014.

The role of imperious director Zach will be played by West End leading man and TV star John Partridge, best known for his role as Christian Clarke in EastEnders. John has appeared in numerous musical theatre productions including Cats, Starlight Express, Tommy, Grease,  The Drowsy Chaperone,  Rent  and Miss Saigon. John is currently one of the presenters of the National Lottery programme and  he was selected by the BBC to join Andrew Lloyd Webber, Charlotte Church and Sheila Hancock as a judge on BBC1’s Over The Rainbow.

Scarlett Strallen is currently starring as Kathy in the West End production of Singin’in the Rain,  for which she received an Olivier Award nomination. Her previous theatre work includes Clara in Passion at the Donmar Warehouse, the title role in Mary Poppins in the West End and on Broadway and  Truly Scrumptious in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang at the London Palladium.

Leigh  Zimmerman has appeared twice in the West End production of  Chicago playing Velma Kelly and in 2005 she was Olivier nominated for her role as Ulla in The Producers at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane. Her Broadway credits include The Will Rogers Follies, Crazy For You and A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.

Victoria Hamilton-Barritt was most recently seen playing Gypsy Rose Lee in Leicester Curve’s production of  Gypsy. She also  played the lead role of Alex in Flashdance in the West End and the role of Anita in the international tour of West Side Story.

Michael Bennett’s production of  A Chorus Line won nine Tony Awards and the Pulitzer Prize for Drama when it opened on Broadway in 1975 and went on to become the then longest running musical on Broadway achieving an astonishing 6137 performances. It features some of musical theatre’s best loved songs:  One (Singular Sensation),  What I Did For Love,  I Can Do That,  Hello Twelve, Hello Thirteen, Hello Love and Hope I Get It.

The production will be directed by Broadway and West End veteran director and choreographer Bob Avian. Avian was Michael Bennett’s long term collaborator and his co-choreographer on the original production. Avian was also responsible for directing the 2006 Broadway revival of A Chorus Line.

Andrew Lloyd Webber said:  “I am delighted to welcome  A Chorus Line into The London Palladium. This classic Broadway production has not been seen in the West End for almost 35 years. Marvin Hamlisch was a great friend and supporter in my early career  and I can think of no more fitting tribute to him than this major revival.”

This long anticipated revival will become a tribute to the show’s composer Marvin Hamlisch who tragically died in early August last year. Hamlisch’s contribution to the stage and screen is widely recognised as being seminal. Perhaps his best known songs include  The Way We Were and  Nobody Does It Better and along with his musical theatre work his scores for films include  Ordinary People and  Sophie’s Choice.

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A Chorus Line at the London Palladium

September 8, 2012 

A major new revival of Tony award-winning Broadway musical A Chorus Line comes to the London Palladium, featuring the late Marvin Hamlisch’s sublime score in a brand new production by Bob Avian.

The cast of this new London production includes Scarlett Strallen as Cassie, Victoria Hamilton-Barritt as Diana, John Partridge as Zach and Leigh Zimmerman as Sheila.

The West End revival of A Chorus Line is directed and choreographed by Bob Avian, who co-choreographed the original production alongside Michael Bennett. Avian also directed the 2006 New York revival of the show.
The show’s music is by Marvin Hamlisch with lyrics by Edward Kleban, and a book by James Kirkwood, Jr. and Nicholas Dante.

In A Chorus Line, auditions are underway for a new Broadway musical. For everyone present, it’s the chance of a lifetime. It’s the one opportunity to do what they’ve always dreamed of – to have the chance to dance. Told through captivating song, riveting drama and stunning choreography, the auditionees describe the events that have shaped their lives and their decisions to become dancers.

The show features classic songs including One Singular Sensation and Hope I Get It, and the original 1975 Broadway production won 9 Tony Awards and the 1976 Pulitzer Prize for Drama.

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Theatre: London Palladium

A Chorus Line at the London Palladium

 

Flashdance to close early

November 22, 2010 

Flashdance The Musical has posted early closing notices at the Shaftesbury Theatre in London

Victoria Hamilton Barritt in Flashdance

Victoria Hamilton Barritt in Flashdance

Based on the 80s movie about an 18 year old girl from Pittsburgh who is a welder by day and a ‘flashdancer” by night, the musical features the star of the UK tour, Victoria Hamilton Barritt, and former Busted boyband member Matt Willis.

Producers of the show have confirmed that it will close at the Shaftesbury Theatre on 15 January 2011. The show received mixed reviews when it opened at the theatre in October, with Michael Billington in the Guardian typical of the critical response to the show: “Thanks to Arlene Phillips’s choreography and Nikolai Foster’s direction, the show brims with physical energy and is full of visual invention. All the same, there are aspects of this blue-collar Cinderella story that don’t quite add up.”

Written by Tom Hedley and Robert Cary, with music by Robbie Roth, lyrics by Robert Cary and Robbie Roth, Flashdance The Musical is directed by Nikolai Foster with choreography by Arlene Phillips and orchestrations and musical supervision by Phil Edwards. Flashdance The Musical, is based on the Paramount Pictures film and its well-known score includes Maniac, Manhunt, Gloria and the Academy Award winning title song Flashdance – What a Feeling. Ten original songs have also been created for the musical.

SPECIAL OFFER: Save £19.50 on previews to Flashdance The Musical at the Shaftesbury Theatre in London

FURTHER INFORMATION

Customers who have booked tickets for the show from 17 January onwards should contact their original point of sale for refunds. Customers who have booked through westendtheatre.com, please contact Encore Tickets on +44 (0) 207 492 1606 between 10am and 5pm Monday to Friday or email hdesk@encoretickets.co.uk with your booking details.

Flashdance – Save £19.50 on tickets

October 21, 2010 

Save £19.50 on tickets to see FLASHDANCE The Musical at the Shaftesbury Theatre in London

Valid Mon – Fri until the 30 November (excludes 25-31 Oct)

Victoria Hamilton Barritt in Flashdance The Musical

Victoria Hamilton Barritt in Flashdance The Musical

Based on the hit Jerry Bruckheimer movie, Flashdance The Musical is a high-octane dance sensation choreographed by Arlene Phillips and featuring an iconic score that includes Manhunt, Gloria and Flashdance – What A Feeling.

Based on the 80s movie about an 18 year old girl from Pittsburgh who is a welder by day and a ‘flashdancer” by night, the musical features the star of the UK tour, Victoria Hamilton Barritt, and former Busted boyband member Matt Willis.

The David Ian production is directed by Nikolai Foster with choreography by Arlene Phillips (Grease, Strictly Come Dancing), and the show’s well-known score includes Maniac, Manhunt, Gloria and the Academy Award winning title song Flashdance – What a Feeling. Ten original songs have also been created for the musical.

“A great recession-buster of a night out” (Daily Mail)

BOOK TICKETS: Save £19.50 on tickets to see FLASHDANCE The Musical at the Shaftesbury Theatre in London

Valid Mon – Fri until the 30 November (excludes 25-31 Oct)

VIDEO: Flashdance the Musical at the Shaftesbury Theatre

October 20, 2010 

Based on the hit Jerry Bruckheimer movie, Flashdance The Musical is a high-octane dance sensation choreographed by Arlene Phillips and featuring an iconic score that includes Manhunt, Gloria and Flashdance – What A Feeling. Stars Victoria Hamilton Barritt and former Busted boyband member Matt Willis.

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Flashdance the Musical at the Shaftesbury Theatre in London – Trailer

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Flashdance The Musical – Reviews Round-up

October 15, 2010 

A round-up of reviews for Flashdance The Musical at the Shaftesbury Theatre in London

Victoria Hamilton Barritt in Flashdance The Musical

Victoria Hamilton Barritt in Flashdance The Musical

Hot on the heels of a West End filling up with shows based on 80s movie, it’s the turn of Flashdance The Musical to get its moment on Shaftesbury Avenue.

Based on the hit Jerry Bruckheimer movie, Flashdance The Musical is choreographed by Arlene Phillips and features a well-known score that includes Manhunt, Gloria and Flashdance – What A Feeling.

As the critics point out, the story is very Billy Elliot: an 18 year old girl from Pittsburgh, who is a welder by day and a ‘flashdancer” in a club by night, dreams of becoming a ballet dancer. When she falls for her posh boss, all of her dreams start to come together.

The musical features the star of the UK tour, Victoria Hamilton Barritt, and former Busted boyband member Matt Willis.

Critics were mostly full of praise for Phillips’ choreography and the lead performances, but marked the show down over the revised plot (trying to be darker in places) and of feeling manipulated and hit over the head with yet another movie-into-a-musical.

Read round-ups of reviews from the Guardian, Telegraph, Daily Mail, Daily Express and The Stage below.

Special offer: Save £19.50 on tickets to Flashdance The Musical at the Shaftebsury Theatre in London

Opening this week: Onassis, Flashdance

October 11, 2010 

This week’s West End openings range from classic American drama to modern Greek tragedy, with Pittsburgh flashdancing and West End blues thrown in. Plus the 80th birthday of a Wicked West End theatre.

THE COUNTRY GIRL

The Country GirlOpening tonight, Monday 11 October, at the Apollo Theatre is Clifford Odets’s classic drama The Country Girl, about a once-great theatre star who is given the chance to make a major comeback.

Jenny Seagrove and Martin Shaw reunite on stage after their onscreen appearance in Judge John Deed to star in the show.

Special offer: Book tickets to The Country Girl at the Apollo Theatre

ONASSIS

On Tuesday 12 October at the Novello Theatre Robert Lindsay opens in Onassis, playing controversial Greek tycoon Aristotle in Martin Sherman’s new play. Based on the last years of this life, this powerful drama reveals his passionate and interwoven relationships with Jackie Kennedy and Maria Callas, and his son Alexandros. Stand-out supporting performances come from Anna Francolini as Callas and Lydia Leonard as Jackie.

Special offer: Book tickets to Onassis at the Novello Theatre

FLASHDANCE THE MUSICAL

Flashdance The MusicalDespite technical problems with the rain machine that postponed the start of previews, Flashdance the Musical is set for a trouble-free first night on Thursday 14 October at the Shaftesbury Theatre.

Based on the 80s movie about an 18 year old girl from Pittsburgh who is a welder by day and a ‘flashdancer” by night, the musical features the star of the UK tour, Victoria Hamilton Barritt, and former Busted boyband member Matt Willis. Grease producer David Ian is the man behind the show, with direction by Nikolai Foster and choreography by the ubiquitous Arlene Phillips. The show’s well-known score includes Maniac, Manhunt, Gloria and the Academy Award winning title song Flashdance – What a Feeling. Ten original songs have also been created for the musical.

Special Offer: Book tickets to Flashdance the Musical at the Shaftesbury Theatre

THE BARBER OF SEVILLE

Thursday also sees the opening night for the new venture at the King’s Head pub theatre in Islington: London’s Little Opera House opens with a new version of The Barber of Seville, directed by Robin Norton-Hale. Artistic director Adam Spreadbury-Maher is promising an exciting season of opera on a small scale including Madame Butterfly as a Bangkok lady-boy.

Book tickets to The Barber of Seville at London’s Little Opera House

THE MUSIC OF THE BLUES BROTHERS – A TRIBUTE

Finally, on Friday 15 October Hartshorn – Hook Productions presents ‘The Music of the Blues Brothers – a Tribute’, the most electric rock’n’roll party of the year. Following spectacular success at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe this summer with a month of sell-out shows and 5-star reviews, this raucous live tribute show is now rolling into London. This Tribute is directed by the award-winning Patrick Wilde and is backed by the tightest rhythm and blues band in the city. We tear through the best in American Blues, Soul and Rock’n’Roll classics including Gimme Some Lovin, Think, Minnie The Moocher, Sweet Home Chicago, and Jailhouse Rock. So dig out your sunglasses and get ready to shake your tail feather because this supercharged high-octane Tribute is about to take London by storm.

Books tickets to The Music of the Blues Brothers – A Tribute

APOLLO VICTORIA THEATRE

Apollo Victoria TheatreFriday also sees the 80th birthday of the Apollo Victoria Theatre in London. Celebrations have included an all-star charity gala yesterday, Sunday 10 October, featuring the cast of the venue’s current show, Wicked, and past productions including Starlight Express. The Apollo Victoria forms part of a historic year for West End theatres, with a number of venues celebrating their 80th anniversaries this year.

Designed by E. Wamsley Lewis and W E Trent, the Apollo Victoria originally opened as a cinema on 15 October 1930 showing George Arlis movie “Old English”.


Flashdance The Musical starts Saturday

September 25, 2010 

Flashdance The Musical starts previews Saturday at the Shaftesbury Theatre in London

Victoria Hamilton Barritt in Flashdance

Victoria Hamilton Barritt in Flashdance

After technical problems postponed the start of previews yesterday for Flashdance the Musical, the show starts tonight, 25 September, at the Shaftesbury Theatre, with its press night on 14 October 2010.

Based on the 80s movie about an 18 year old girl from Pittsburgh who is a welder by day and a ‘flashdancer” by night, the musical features the star of the UK tour, Victoria Hamilton Barritt, and former Busted boyband member Matt Willis.

The David Ian production is directed by Nikolai Foster with choreography by Arlene Phillips (Grease, Strictly Come Dancing), and the show’s well-known score includes Maniac, Manhunt, Gloria and the Academy Award winning title song Flashdance – What a Feeling. Ten original songs have also been created for the musical.

SPECIAL OFFER: Save £18.50 on previews to Flashdance The Musical at the Shaftesbury Theatre in London

SHOWS CLOSING:

Saturday 25 September: The Prisoner of Second Avenue at the Vaudeville Theatre. Jeff Goldblum and Mercedes Ruehl end their run in Neil Simon’s brilliant New York comedy.

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