New musical The Book Thief to run at Belgrade & Leicester Curve Theatres

The Book Thief, a new musical based on Marcus Zusak’s best selling novel will run at the Belgrade Theatre in Coventry and Curve Theatre in Leicester in autumn 2023.

The new musical, based on Markus Zusak’s 16 million-copy global best-seller, is adapted by award-winning best-selling author Jodi Picoult (My Sister’s Keeper & Small Great Things) and Timothy Allen McDonald (adaptor of Roald Dahl’s Willy Wonka & James and the Giant Peach) with music and lyrics by Kate Anderson and Elyssa Samsel (Apple TV’s Central Park & Olaf’s Frozen Adventure).

The show will play Belgrade Theatre in Coventry from 11 – 16 September 2023 and then transfer to Curve Theatre, Leicester from 29 September until 14 October 2023.

The Book Thief is a poignant and heart-wrenching tale of a young girl’s journey of self-discovery against the backdrop of Nazi Germany. Beginning with Liesel Meminger’s first act of book thievery at a snow-covered graveside, the story captivates with its portrayal of the power of words and the impact they can have in even the darkest of times.

An initial presentation of the The Book Thief musical at the Octagon Theatre in Bolton last year was well received with the show receiving a WhatsOnStage nomination for Best Regional Production.

Co-Librettists Jodi Picoult and Timothy Allen McDonald said “It was an honour to adapt Markus Zusak’s historical novel, The Book Thief, as a musical, and we are thrilled to present it in Leicester and Coventry. In a time when history seems intent on repeating itself – when hate crimes throw a spotlight on the differences between us; when words are being used to harm, rather than heal; when lies are being used to fuel a war – we feel that this story is more relevant and powerful than ever. It is our hope that this beautiful, moving show reminds the audience that the past has a nasty habit of not staying in the past – and that it is up to us to change that.”

Author of the novel Markus Zusak said: “A writer always worries about an adaptation of their work, but The Book Thief musical has been a revelation and a joy. Everyone involved has respected the novel beyond my expectations, and I’ve loved watching it grow. Most importantly, when I saw it for the first time, I knew that it felt like the book, which is the hardest thing to achieve. The characters truly are the characters I loved when I was writing it all those years ago, and the songs are just amazing. I can’t wait to see it in its newest incarnation later this year.”

From Ramin Sabi and Emily Lunnon, DEM Productions (Producer): “The Book Thief is a gift of a show for us at DEM, bringing together our longstanding commitment to producing new musical theatre and the opportunity to tell one of modern literature’s most beloved stories through this unique artform. We’re delighted to be sharing this spine-tingling score, exquisite storytelling, and the work of this sensational creative team with audiences in Coventry and Leicester at this early stage in the life of what we hope will become a wonderful addition to the 21st century musical canon.”

The Book Thief will be directed by Lotte Wakeham (The Book Thief, Shirley Valentine, A Midsummer Night’s Dream), with choreography by Tom Jackson Greaves, orchestrations & arrangements, musical supervision & musical director by Matthew Malone, set & costume design by Good Teeth, lighting design by Nic Farman, sound design by Andy Graham, video design by Dick Straker, puppet design by Sam Wilde, casting by Abby Galvin for Jessica Ronane Casting and Production Management by Andy Fox and Lee Batty for Setting Line Production Management.

The Book Thief is produced by Deus Ex Machina Productions (Ride: A New Musical, Spring Awakening) with Writer’s Cage, Christopher Ketner, and Andrew Paradis, in association with Belgrade, Coventry.

📷 Main photo: The Book Thief

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