A new musical adaptation of the acclaimed book The Time Traveller’s Wife is set to premiere in Chester this year, ahead of a West End transfer.
Audrey Niffenegger’s best-selling novel, and the subsequent movie screenplay by Bruce Joel Rubin, have been adapted into a musical by playwright Lauren Gunderson (I and You, The Book of Will), with music and lyrics by singer-songwriter Joss Stone and The Eurythmics’ Dave Stewart, and additional lyrics by Kait Kerrigan.
Produced by Colin Ingram for InTheatre Productions, Gavin Kalin Productions, Teresa Tsai and Crossroads Live, the show will premiere at Chester’s Storyhouse theatre on 30 September until 15 October 2022, and there are then plans to bring the show into London.
The Time Traveller’s Wife will be directed by Bill Buckhurst, who is directing this year’s revival of Sister Act at the Eventim Apollo, and designed by Anna Fleischle. Choreography is by Shelley Maxwell, lighting design by Lucy Carter, sound by Richard Brooker, video design by Andrzej Golding, illusions by Chris Fisher, musical supervisions and arrangement by Nick Finlow, orchestrations are by Bryan Crook and casting by Stuart Burt.
The casting of the show is yet to be announced.
The story is about Henry and Clare’s love story, an ordinary love story but that is like no other: they meet, flirt, fight, love, marry… but all out of order. Henry is often and uncontrollably ripped out of time, because he suffers from a rare condition where his genetic clock periodically resets, pulling him into his past or future, vanishing before one’s eyes, never knowing where or when he’s going next. Except he knows he’ll always come back to Clare, whether she’s 5 years old playing in a field or 85, dreaming of her time-travelling husband.
Audrey Niffenegger told the press that: “I am thrilled that my book is being adapted for the stage and with the very talented artists who are creating the musical. I am really looking forward to seeing what they do with it.”
Colin Ingram, who is a producer of Back to the Future which is currently playing at the Adelphi Theatre in London, said that he was “delighted to be bringing this incredible new musical to the 750-seat Chester Storyhouse for a two-week run prior to a transfer to the West End and beyond.”
Dave Stewart and Joss Stone said of working together on the new musical, “We have been on many crazy adventures together but we’ve never ‘Time Travelled’ till meeting Lauren Gunderson. Writing these songs together whilst being in different locations on different time zones has been a trip (literally), throwing us into an eddy of emotive melodies and heart-wrenching lyrics to go with the push and pull of this unusual love story. We all time travel in our relationships and in our lives in general, but to write something that people will see and hear happening live on stage is thrilling to imagine, and hearing Bill Buckhurst’s interpretations of Lauren’s script for stage as we went along has been so inspiring.”