February 3rd, 2006

Fishy Circumstances

Adaptations, and other musical notes

Wicked will be opening in repertory in London this coming September. It won't be quite the same version that everyone else has already seen. Apparently the musical will be tweaked to appeal to British audiences, with particular hints that tweaks will emphasize the political subplot of the musical. I don't have any great confidence that this will help the musical, but I do hope it won't hurt it. It's a fabulous piece of musical theater.

There's at least a bit of a tradition of changing musicals to appeal to one side of the ocean instead of the other. Chess was the most extreme instance of this I've met (I prefer the less politically-charged British version, personally.) Meanwhile, another musical I've love to see again, Bombay Dreams, was closed down in London the better part of a year ago, supposedly to be revamped for a New York audience, with the new version eventually re-opening in London. We'll see if that ever happens.

In other musical news, the Lord of the Rings musical opens tomorrow/Saturday in Toronto for preview shows, two days after it was originally scheduled to. With music written in part by A.R. Rahman, composer of Bombay Dreams, I have high hopes for the music at least.

The Lord of the Rings musical is due in London in 2007. Spamalot is coming in October. Meanwhile, The Woman in White and We Will Rock You close later this year.