Full Monty Bares All at Prince of Wales, 12 MarDate: 12 October 2001
As predicted last month in The Goss, the hit musical The Full Monty will be moving into the West End's Prince of Wales Theatre. It's been confirmed today that the Broadway blockbuster, based on the British film, will receive its UK premiere next year, with an opening at the Prince of Wales on 12 March 2001, following previews from 27 February. The theatre will be vacant from the end of this month when, as announced earlier this week, Cameron Mackintosh's The Witches of Eastwick closes early.
Peter Cattaneo's 1997 film The Full Monty became one of Britain's biggest ever hits, garnering six Oscar nominations in addition to international acclaim. Starring Robert Carlyle, Tom Wilkinson and Hugo Speer, it tells the story of six unemployed men who turn to stripping in order to earn money.
The stage musical is the creation of American bookwriter Terrence McNally and first-time theatrical composer David Yazbek. They have made substantial changes in the adaptation to the new medium, including the addition of several characters, new dance numbers, new songs of course and, most controversially (at least for British domestic audiences), the transatlantic move of the locale. While the film original was set in Sheffield, England, the stage action occurs in the American city of Buffalo, New York.
The stage Full Monty premiered - to enthusiastic reviews and box office records - in San Diego, California. It opened at Broadway's Eugene O'Neill Theatre last October, and this year, has launched an extensive US tour.
Terrence McNally is famous for musicals such as Ragtime and Kiss of the Spider Woman as well as plays including Corpus Christi and Love! Valor! Compassion!. Yazbek's previous songwriting efforts have mainly been in the pop music arena, for groups like XTZ, Space Hog and Verve Pipe.
On Broadway, The Full Monty is directed by Jack O'Brien, choreographed by Jerry Mitchell and designed by John Arnone, with lighting by Howell Binkley, costumes by Robert Morgan and sound by Tom Clark. Details of the creative team and cast for the London production have not yet been announced.
- by Terri Paddock