Opening: Camelot, Snoopy, Salem & New SpringerDate: 19 July 2004
Amongst the major shows opening in London this week are:
OPENING WEDNESDAY, 21 July 2004, Marc Salem’s Mind Games returns to the UK for a limited three weeks at north London’s Tricycle Theatre, booking up to 8 August (See News, 2 Jun 2004). The mystifying one-man show from the behavioural psychologist-turned-entertainer was a hit at the 2001 Edinburgh Festival Fringe and received its London premiere in October 2001 at the Hampstead Theatre. In spring 2002, it ran for eight weeks at the West End’s New Ambassadors Theatre.
ALSO ON WEDNESDAY (previews from 14 July), the 21st-anniversary production of Snoopy - The Musical reopens the New Players Theatre, which has been shut since March 2002. Based on the world-famous Peanuts comic-strip - which debuted in 1950 and continued for 50 years until January 2000, just weeks before the death of its creator, Charles M Schulz - Snoopy had its West End premiere in 1983 with an Olivier award-winning run at the Duchess Theatre that starred Susie Blake and Teddy Kempner.
The new production – directed by Broadway director and producer Arthur Whitelaw – who conceived, co-wrote, produced and directed the original - reunites some cast members from a 2003 staging at London’s Jermyn Street Theatre. Robin Armstrong plays the title role, with Steven Kynman as Charlie Brown.
OPENING THURSDAY, 22 July 2004, Jerry Springer - The Opera welcomes a new cast at the West End’s Cambridge Theatre (See News, 10 Jun 2004). Amongst other newcomers to the show is Starsky and Hutch’s David Soul who takes over from Michael Brandon in the title role of the four-time Best Musical winner (in the Evening Standard, Critics Circle, Laurence Olivier and Whatsonstage.com’s own Theatregoers’ Choice Awards). David Bedella (who won this year’s Best Actor Olivier for his role as the warm-up guy/Satan), Alison Jiear and Benjamin Lake (this year’s Whatsonstage.com Award winner for London Newcomer of the Year) remain from the original company.
OPENING FRIDAY, 23 July 2004, Lerner and Loewe’s 1960 Broadway musical Camelot is revived at the Open Air Theatre in Regent’s Park, where it continues in repertory until 4 September (See News, 10 Jun 2004). Based on T H White’s novel The Once and Future King, it retells the legend of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, whose hopes for a peaceful society were destroyed by the love triangle between Arthur, his queen Guinevere and the Gallic knight Lancelot. Ian Talbot’s new production stars Daniel Flynn (as Arthur), Lauren Ward (Guinevere), Matt Rawle and Russ Abbot as lovable fool Pellinore.
- by Terri Paddock