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Actor recreates iconic stage designs in Lego

Taking blocking to a whole new level

The original production of Evita
© Henry Lee

A US performer has started a whole new passion project – recreating iconic theatre designs from Lego.

Henry Lee, currently based at Western Michigan University, created a new series of miniature replicas of iconic stage shows, from Soutra Gilmour's new version of Evita from 2019 through to classics such as Eugene Lee's original 1979 Sweeney Todd.

Lee told WhatsOnStage today: "I started Lego Broadway Sets in early May mostly as a personal project that brought the theatre to me during a time when it felt as though audiences and artists alike would likely not experience a theatrical space in a long time. Although I'm first and foremost an actor/singer, and am currently a BFA Music Theatre Performance student at Western Michigan University, I've always had my fingers in every theatrical pot (#multihyphenate), so to speak, and I really wanted to explore how I could share my love of the uniquely ephemeral experience that is a play living in a theatrical space whilst being in lockdown/quarantine."

Lee has one favourite show: "My favorite recreations so far have naturally been of my utmost favorite play of all time – Evita. So far, I've done recreations of two productions: the forever iconic and absolute genius masterpiece that is the late Hal Prince's original West End and Broadway production – what I call my 'Crown Jewel', and Jamie Lloyd's radically brilliant Regent's Park Open Air Theatre production that opened in the summer of 2019 and was slated to have a now-postponed Barbican run this summer.

"Runners-up include Hal Prince's gargantuan original production of Sweeney Todd and Francesca Zambello's cinematic original production of Rebecca, which has unfortunately never seen an English-languaged production despite having infamously come very close."

The actor has some exciting projects in the pipeline – though the real world has slowed things down somewhat in a positive way: " I've just started rehearsals for WMU's reimagined outdoor and socially-distanced production of Sunday in the Park with George (I've actually recreated the original production!), so I've decided to take a hiatus from building new recreations over the next couple months. However, I will still be working very hard to bring my work into the physical world in the meantime, and am hoping to eventually exhibit my recreations for not only theatre folk, but also the general public!"

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