Norris Revives Cabaret at Lyric, October OpeningDate: 26 May 2006
As previously tipped (See The Goss, 11 Apr 2006), the long-rumoured production of Cabaret, out of the stable of British producer Bill Kenwright, will go head-to-head with this autumnís two big Broadway musical imports.
The revival of the Kander and Ebb musical is now confirmed for the West Endís Lyric Theatre, Shaftesbury Avenue, where itís due to open on 10 October 2006 (previews from 22 September) Ė smack dab between Wickedís West End premiere at the Apollo Victoria on 27 September (previews from 7 September) and Spamalotís at the Palace Theatre on 16 October (2 October). Further ahead, the West End will see yet more big musical openings, including the Australian import of screen-to-stager Dirty Dancing and the revival of Rodgers and Hammersteinís The Sound of Music, joining summer arrivals of Evita, Avenue Q and others.
Set in the Kit Kat Klub of 1930s Berlin, Cabaret centres on sultry singer Sally Bowles in a story of pre-war sexual decadence and eroticism. Based on the stories of Christopher Isherwood and the play by John Van Druten, it has a book by Joe Masteroff, music by John Kander and lyrics by Fred Ebb.
Cabaret premiered on Broadway on 1966 and in 1972 was made into an Oscar-winning film starring Liza Minnelli as Sally Bowles, Michael York and Joel Grey as the Emcee. The stage musical was famously revived by Sam Mendes at Londonís Donmar Warehouse in 1993. That production later transferred to Broadway, where it ran from 1998 to 2004 and won a host of awards, including Tonys for Best Musical Revival, Best Actor in a Musical for Scotsman Alan Cumming, playing the Emcee, and Best Actress in a Musical for Natasha Richardson as Sally.
The new West End production is directed by Rufus Norris, who won both the Evening Standard and Criticsí Circle Awards for Best Director for Festen. Norrisí other credits include Tintin, Blood Wedding, Sleeping Beauty, Peribanez and Afore Night Comes. Next month at the National, he directs the world premiere of Market Boy, which reunites him with Festen playwright David Eldridge.
No casting has yet been confirmed for Cabaret, although names previously rumoured in connection with the role of Sally Bowles have included Denise Van Outen and, more recently, Martine McCutcheon (See The Goss, 19 May 2006).
Currently at the Lyric, Carmel Morganís Smaller - starring Dawn French, Alison Moyet and June Watson and directed by Kathy Burke - finishes its extended run on 3 June 2006. Itís followed, for 37 performances only from 14 June to 15 July 2006, by the stage version of BBC Twoís hit TV show Grumpy Old Women, starring Jenny Eclair, Dillie Keane and Linda Robson (See News, 24 May 2006).
- by Terri Paddock
NOTE: Booking has not yet opened for this production.