Alan Menken explains the three new songs in Beauty and the Beast

The live-action retelling opens in UK cinemas this week

As Emma Watson and the cast of Beauty and the Beast prepare for the film's release this week, we sat down at the piano with composer Alan Menken to talk about the film's three new songs.

Menken is an eight-time Academy Award winner who has worked on film and stage versions of Disney shows including Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin and The Little Mermaid. Along with lyricist Howard Ashman he also wrote Little Shop of Horrors.

The live-action version of Disney's Beauty and the Beast features Emma Watson as Belle, Dan Stevens as the Beast and Luke Evans as Gaston. Ian McKellen stars as Cogsworth, Ewan McGregor is Lumiere and Emma Thompson plays Mrs Potts, originally played by Angela Lansbury in the original 1991 film.

Beauty and the Beast is released on 17 March 2017.