Technical Issues Cause Two Rock You CancellationsDate: 24 April 2002
The new Queen/Ben Elton musical We Will Rock You has cancelled its first two preview performances tonight and tomorrow, 24 and 25 April 2002, due to technical difficulties. It's hoped that these will be resolved in time for Friday evening's performances at 7.30pm. The show is due to receive its world premiere on 14 May 2002, after more than six years in development.
At a cost of £7.5 million, We Will Rock You joins the just-opened Chitty Chitty Bang Bang as one of the most expensive stage productions in West End history. Designers Mark Fisher and Willie Williams - best known for their rock concert creations for the likes of Pink Floyd, The Rolling Stones, Janet Jackson and U2 - have, according to promoters, built a set that "pushes the boundaries of innovative design even further". It includes more than £1 million worth of LED screens, specially shipped in from Hong Kong.
We Will Rock You is set in the future, in a place that was once called Earth. Globalisation is complete and the evil Killer Queen has banned Rock 'n' Roll in favour of computer-produced cyber stars and Andro Bands. But Resistance is growing amongst the Bohemians who believe in a Golden Age when kids wrote their own songs. They need a hero to help recover the hairy guitar god. Is the one who calls himself Galileo that man?
More than 6,500 performers were auditioned for the 37-strong company that includes stage veterans Nigel Planer, Sharon D Clarke and Alexander Hanson as well as Kerry Ellis, American Tony Vincent, Andrew Derbyshire and newcomer Hannah Jane Fox. We Will Rock You features a book by Ben Elton and no fewer than 31 of Queen's greatest hits, including "Bohemian Rhapsody", "Crazy Little Thing Called Love", "Under Pressure", "Radio Gaga" and, of course, "We Will Rock You".
The musical is directed by Christopher Renshaw and choreographed by Arlene Phillips, with costumes by Tim Goodchild, sound by Bobby Aitken and music supervision by Mike Dixon. It is presented by Tribeca Productions (owned by Hollywood superstar Robert DeNiro who flew in last month to view a rehearsal and officially launch We Will Rock You to the world's media) along with Queen and Phil McIntyre Promotions.
- by Terri Paddock