This year, three musicals will receive 'semi-staged' performances at the Lilian Baylis Theatre, Sadler's Wells and the National Portrait Gallery, directed as always by Ian Marshall Fisher.
The season opens at the Lilian Baylis with Cole Porter's 1928 comedy musical Paris, most notable for the hit song “Let's Do It”. The cast includes Anne Reid, and it runs on consecutive Sundays from 28 March to 25 April.
Next up at the same venue (from 13 June to 11 July) is 1945 musical The Day Before Spring, featuring music by Frederick Loewe and book/lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner (the same team behind My Fair Lady and Gigi). Described as a “witty psychoanalytical fantasy”, it apparently received “good reviews” on its opening but has since disappeared from the repertoire.
The National Portrait Gallery Ondaatje Theatre will host the final production in the season, Darling of the Day. Running from 22 August to 19 September it has music by Jule Styne (Gypsy), lyrics by EY Harburg (The Wizard of Oz) and a book Nunnally Johnson (The Grapes of Wrath). Written in 1968, based on Arnold Bennett's Buried Alive, it's the story of a celebrated artist who fakes his own death, such is his yearning for anonymity.
Ian Marshall Fisher, who founded Lost Musicals in 1990, will also be directing Cole Porter and Orson Welles' Around the World (1946) in New York in November.