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Zoe Birkett to Play 'Maureen' in RENT, Greenwich Theatre, Sept 2012


Zoe Birkett, who shot to fame in 2002 as a finalist on the first series of Pop Idol, won by Will Young, and has gone on to appear in the West End in Priscilla Queen of the Desert The Musical, Thriller Live, What A Feeling, Respect La Diva and Hair, is to play Maureen Johnson in a new London production of the multi award-winning musical Rent.
She joins the previously announced Steph Fearon, who reached the semi-finals of the BBC1's Over The Rainbow competition for the West End role of Dorothy in The Wizard Of Oz, as Mimi Marquez.
Rent, with music and lyrics by Jonathan Larson and directed by Paul Taylor-Mills, will run at Greenwich Theatre from Wednesday 5th September - Sunday 16th September.
Rent is based on Giacomo Puccini's opera La bohème and tells the story of a group of impoverished young artists and musicians struggling to survive and create in New York's Lower East Side in the thriving days of Bohemian Alphabet City, under the shadow of HIV/AIDS.
The original production of Rent opened at Broadway's Nederlander Theatre on April 29, 1996 following a history making, sold out, extended limited engagement at off-Broadway's New York Theatre Workshop. The musical went on to win every major best musical award, including the Tony Award, New York Drama Critics Circle Award, Drama Desk Award, and the Outer Critics Circle Award. Additionally, Rent is one of only eight musicals to win the Pulitzer Prize for drama. In all Rent won four Tony Awards, six Drama Desk Awards, two Theatre World Awards, and Obie Awards for its creator, director, and entire cast. The show's creator, Jonathan Larson, died suddenly the night before the off-Broadway premiere. The original production closed on September 7, 2008, after playing 5,124 performances and 16 previews. Rent is the ninth longest running show in Broadway history.
Director Paul Taylor-Mills' credits include Little Shop of Horrors (White Bear) nominated for four Off West End Awards, including Best Director; A Clockwork Orange and One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (Lost Theatre); the European premiere of My Big Gay Italian Wedding (two sold-out seasons Above The Stag and C Venues, Edinburgh); and The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas (Union), Off West End nomination for Best Director.
This production is presented by special arrangement with Joseph Weinberger and in association with Greenwich Theatre.
Directed by Paul Taylor-Mills
Associate Director Stephen Whitson
Choreographer Richard Jones
Musical Directors Huw Evans and Tom Turner
Designed by David Shields
Produced by Lillie Collier and Kylie Vilcins

Photo Credit: Jouwell Photography

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