Celebrate World Theatre Day With These Great Musical Performances
It may feel like a strange time to celebrate World Theatre Day, but while we can't gather together in person right now, we can still appreciate the incredible performances that have inspired us - and look forward to when theatres reopen and the shows can go on!
Here are some of the fantastic artists and musicals that have recently excited UK theatregoers - thank you, all.
Come From Away
One of the last shows I saw before the shutdown, revisiting the West End production on its first birthday and welcoming an amazing new cast - and one that feels so incredibly pertinent right now. Here's the original London company bringing the Rock to the 2019 Olivier Awards!
The epic musical was reborn at the beautifully refurbished Sondheim Theatre. We can't wait until it lives again - just one day (er, maybe month) more! Here are Carrie Hope Fletcher and Shan Ako, the amazing current Fantine and Eponine respectively, at Proms in Hyde Park.
Everybody's Talking About Jamie
This heart-warming, homegrown musical has been an incredible British success story. With its diverse, talented cast, and its message of tolerance and self-acceptance, it speaks to both veteran theatregoers and new audiences in important ways. Plus, it's got a great score! Here's the catchy "And You Don't Even Know It", led by Noah Thomas.
A major Olivier Awards contender before the 2020 ceremony was sadly postponed, & Juliet was the best night out in the West End - and will be again soon! I can't wait to rejoin this Shakespeare/pop music mash-up and let out an almighty "Roar". Check out the trailer to get a taste of this jubilant show.
Dear Evan Hansen
Another Olivier hopeful, fans were thrilled to finally have a UK transfer of this Tony Award-winning musical - and, playing the complex title role, Sam Tutty became an overnight star. Here's the fantastic cast performing on The One Show, offering a promise of support and connection that many people need right now.
Fiddler on the Roof
Trevor Nunn's superb revival at the Menier Chocolate Factory got a deserved West End encore, led by Andy Nyman and Judy Kuhn. They may be not be able to compete at the Oliviers, but we can definitely celebrate this wonderful show here! Check out their performance at West End Live.
It's been an incredible couple of years for director Jamie Lloyd, from his James McAvoy-starring Cyrano to a sleek Betrayal capping his triumphant Pinter at the Pinter season - plus The Seagull, which we very much hope will still go ahead in 2020. He also found time to revolutionise Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice's Evita at Regent's Park. Check out the trailer!
The Queens' Broadway debut was tragically cancelled due to the shutdown, but we know they'll reign again soon! It's been such a pleasure watching the rise, and rise, of this original British musical and its awesome female performers - check out their Olivier Awards performance.
We've seen outstanding performances in the West End transfer of this American hit, including from Lucie Jones, David Hunter, Marisha Wallace, Katharine McPhee and Laura Baldwin - plus, in 2020, composer Sara Bareilles herself donning the apron alongside Gavin McCreel. Here they are performing "Bad Idea"!
The Last Five Years
Jason Robert Brown's cult musical was given an exquisitely intimate actor-muso revival at Southwark Playhouse just before the shutdown - I really hope Jonathan O'Boyle's production has a further life. See the virtuosic Molly Lynch and Oli Higginson in rehearsal below.
Blues in the Night
Is there any greater pleasure than listening to the almighty Sharon D Clarke singing the blues? Clarke will still be making her Broadway debut in Caroline, or Change later in the year (hurrah!), but I loved her too in Susie McKenna's gorgeous Kiln production, featuring an exceptional ensemble of performers and musicians. Here is Clarke singing "Lover Man".
Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat
One of my early musical favourites, it was a total joy to revisit Joseph: Tim Rice's mischievously witty lyrics and Lloyd Webber's oh-so-hummable score, plus a fresh production from Laurence Connor making it a Joseph for today. Fingers crossed we'll all be boogie-ing to the Megamix at the Palladium again very soon!
What are your recent theatre faves - and which shows are you hoping to see once the shutdown is over? Let us know @BroadwayWorldUK #WorldTheatreDay!