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Soldier of Orange musical postponed – UK government requests new venue be available for NHS support

The production has outlined its plans during the ongoing coronavirus crisis

A mock-up of the Royal Docks Theatre

It was meant to be housed within a gigantic custom-made venue and begin performances later this year, but the UK premiere of the hit Solder of Orange musical has been postponed due to the ongoing coronavirus outbreak.

According to the production's social channels, the construction of the theatre's Royal Docks Theatre has been halted because of the "precarious social situation". It has also stated that plans have been put on hold due to the "UK government's request that we make our future venue available to support operations of the ExCel Centre as a temporary NHS hospital if needed".

The NHS Nightingale, a temporary NHS hospital set up at the Excel Centre to house coronavirus patients, was opened earlier this month as the number of cases continues to climb.

Work on Soldier of Orange, the production has said, "will resume work when the time is right", and the company will provide information on the musical's pre-sale in due course.

The 1,150-seater Royal Docks Theatre was meant to be built adjacent to the Royal Docks in east London, and had planning permission to exist for five years, creating 150 new jobs with an on-site restaurant housed within the venue complex.

The production has been seen by over three million people in Holland and is based on the story of Dutch resistance fighter Erik Hazelhoff Roelfzema, who joined the RAF during the Second World War. His story was adapted into a film of the same name in 1977 directed by Paul Verhoeven (RoboCop).

The musical has a book by Edwin de Vries, with music and lyrics written by Tom Harriman and Pamela Phillips Oland. This first English production is adapted for the British stage by Jeremy Brock.

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