News Archive

Backstage Whispers overheard by Richard Andrews

Last updated : 21st December 2012

The premiere of Fiesta, adapted by Alex Helfrecht and Sam Snape from Ernest Hemingway's novel The Sun Also Rises, the story of two expat American novelists in Europe in the 1920s, with Gideon Turner, Jye Frasca, Josie Taylor and Jack Holden, and featuring live jazz from the Trio Farouche, directed by Alex Helfrecht, with choreography by Sonja Perreten, will open at the Trafalgar Studios 2 on 7th February. The producers are Philip Munger and George Warren.

AM Media's production of Albert Camus's Cross Purpose, translated by Stuart Gilbert, in which a man returning home to bring good fortune to his mother and sister, decides to remain anonymous, which ultimately proves fatal, with Jamie Birkett, Paddy Navin, David Lomax, Kemi-Bo Jacobs and Leonard Fenton, directed by Stephen Whitson, will return to the King's Head Theatre, in Islington, opening on 10th January.

On The Casting Couch: Betty Buckley will be joined by Paul Nicholas, Anthony Barclay, Peter Land, Annabel Leventon and Rebecca Lock in the Jerome Lawrence-Robert E Lee-David Thompson-Jerry Herman musical Dear World: A Musical Fable, opening at the Charing Cross Theatre on 4th February.

New York TheatreNet: It has been confirmed that Breakfast At Tiffany's, adapted by Richard Greenberg directly from Truman Capote's novella, rather than the subsequent film, with Emilia Clarke, Cory Michael Smith and George Wendt, directed by Sean Mathias, (who directed a different adaptation of the story in London in 2009) will open at the Cort Theatre on 20th March. Set in New York in 1943, it is the story of a poor writer in love with a girl who needs rich, but as she begins to fall for him, her past catches up with her. News, information and special offers about theatre on and off Broadway can be found on New York TheatreNet, via the link opposite below.

We Will Rock You, book by Ben Elton, the future shock musical featuring the music of Queen, with Kevin Kennedy, Brenda Edwards, Mig Ayesa, Lucie Jones and Sean Kingsley, directed by Ben Elton and Arlene Phillips, will open a world arena tour at Nottingham Arena on 27th March.

Forthcoming productions at the Arcola Theatre in Dalston will include Dea Loher's Olga's Room, translated by David Tushingham, a tale of survival as a prisoner struggles to hold on to her disintegrating sense of self, with Bethan Clark, Pete Collis, Sheena May, Larisa Faber and Ceridwen Smith, directed by Samuel Miller, from 9th January, a Speaking In Tongues production; the premiere of Leyla Nazli's The Mare Rider, in which a mythical creature who steals babies, takes a mother on a fantastical journey, with Kathryn Hunter, directed by Mehmet Ergen, from 25th January; and the simple8 theatre company productions of The Cabinet Of Dr Caligari, adapted by Dudley Hinton and Sebastian Armesto from the 1920s Expressionist German film, from 12th February; and Herman Melville's Moby Dick, the classic tale of a hunter's obsession with a whale, adapted by Sebastian Armesto, from 27th March.

The Hackney Empire production of Soul Sister, the biomusical about Tina Turner, with songs from her back catalogue, with Emi Wokoma and Chris Tummings, directed by Pete Brooks and Bob Eaton, with choreography by Jason Pennycooke, and musical staging by Carole Todd, will open a national tour at the King's Theatre in Glasgow on 14th January. The producers are Bill Kenwright and John Miller.

Variety: An Illustrated History Of The World From The Most Important Magazine In Hollywood by Tim Gray, recently published by Rizzoli, is not only a fascinating look at the history of entertainment as reported by the world's most highly regarded commentator of show business news, it is also a history of American popular culture, and a record of the influence and confluence of art, life, and Hollywood. With new and archival photographs spanning more than a century, it is a decade by decade documentation of such pivotal moments as the audience's move from vaudeville houses to movie theaters, censorship, how Lucy and Desi changed the face of television, Walter Cronkite's shaping of America's view of the Vietnam War, the birth of the summer blockbuster, the game changing technology of Jurassic Park and Avatar, and how the movies, television, and theatre reflect society's ever changing social values and mores.

The spring season at the Queen's Theatre in Hornchurch will include Kay Mellor's A Passionate Woman, a comedy about a middle aged woman who embarks on a revelatory and emotional journey following the death of her son, opening on 4th February; the musical They're Playing Our Song, book by Neil Simon, music by Marvin Hamlisch, lyrics by Carole Bayer Sager, about the unlikely relationship of a staid Broadway composer and a ditzy lyricist, opening on 11th March; Ray Cooney's Run For Your Wife, the tale of a bigamist London taxi driver trying to keep two wives happy, opening on 22nd April; and Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island, the iconic 18th century adventure story of swashbuckling pirates and the search for buried treasure in the Caribbean, opening on 29th July.

The recent Menier Chocolate Factory/Theatre Royal Bath production of Mike Leigh's Abigail's Party, the embarrassment, hysteria and pathos of a 1970s nouveau riche suburban cocktail party from hell, with Hannah Waterman and Martin Marquez, directed by Lindsay Posner, will open a national tour at the Theatre Royal Bath on 8th April.

Forthcoming productions at the Belgrade Theatre in Coventry will include Philip Monks's The Night Queen, a magical blend of music, mystery and adventure for children, inspired by Mozart's The Magic Flute, with Dan Willis, Madeleine Leslay and Jennifer Greenwood, directed by Jenny Stephens, from 18th January, a co-production with Hoopla; Nikolai Gogol's Marriage, in a new version by Laurie Slade, a comedy in which a young woman has to choose between four unsuitable suitors, directed by Hamish Glen, opening on 5th February; and Sons Without Fathers, a new version of Anton Chekhov's Platonov by Helena Kaut-Howson and Paul Rhys, about band of disaffected thirty-somethings, too old to move with the times, and too young to let go of their dreams, directed by Helena Kaut-Howson, opening on 16th April, a co-production with Arcola Theatre and KP Productions.

And Finally . . . Helen Mirren will be honoured with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on 3rd January, in a ceremony to be held at 6714 Hollywood Boulevard, in front of The Pig N' Whistle Pub. She is the 2,488th star to receive the honour. The ceremony will be streamed live at 11.30am PST (7.30pm GMT) on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame web site.