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Monkee Business Musical Gets Manchester Premiere

By • West End
A new Monkees-based musical is launching a national tour from the Manchester Opera House early next year.

Monkee Business The Musical, which opens on 3 April 2011 (previews from 29 March), will feature "a cast of 20, a live band of eight, fabulous costumes and sets, a madcap ‘Austin Powers-style’ plot featuring all new characters and a score packed with iconic hits of the swinging sixties."

It's not the first time the sixties boyband have been associated with a stage production - Daydream Believer was due to launch a tour from Plymouth in 2008, but was subsequently cancelled.

Monkee Business will feature "I’m A Believer", "Last Train to Clarksville", "My Boy Lollipop", "You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me", "Hey, Hey We’re The Monkees" and "Daydream Believer" alongside many more songs from the era.

The original Monkees - Davy Jones, Michael Nesmith, Peter Tork and Micky Dolenz - were formed in 1966 as a fictional pop group for a zany TV show. But the success of their first album soon saw them start touring as a real band, going on to become one of the most successful pop acts of the 1960s, with songwriters including Neil Diamond, Carole King and Harry Nilsson among their many collaborators.

Monkee Business premieres at the Opera House as part of 'Manchester Gets It First',  Ambassador Theatre Group’s commitment to making Manchester "the UK’s official city for launching theatre’s biggest and best new musicals", a scheme which has won the backing of the city council. The stage adaptation of Ghost, which is currently running in the West End, premiered in Manchester earlier in the year.

Howard Panter, ATG’s joint chief executive and creative director, said: “Manchester is the ideal place for the original creative process necessary for developing large-scale new musicals like Monkee Business, as it is a city with a great foundation in music with knowledgeable and sophisticated audiences who love and understand fantastic musical theatre.”

Following its run in Manchester, the show will visit Glasgow King's Theatre (17 April-21 April 2012) and the Sunderland Empire (24-28 April 2012).

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