Today (1 April 2016) previews begin for Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Sunset Boulevard at ENO’s London Coliseum. Joining Glenn Close (Norma Desmond), Michael Xavier (Joe Gillis), Siobhan Dillon (Betty Shaefer) and Fred Johanson (Max Von Mayerling) are Anna Woodside as Hedda Hopper, Emily Bull as Hedy Lamarr, Julian Forsyth as Cecil B DeMille, Mark Goldthorp as Sheldrake, Fenton Gray as Manfred, Haydn Oakley as Artie Green and James Paterson as Jonesy. See first production images from photographer Richard Hubert Smith below.
Further company members include Carly Anderson, Michelle Bishop, Jacob Chapman, Nadeem Crowe, Cornelia Farnsworth, Ria Jones, Katie Kerr, Aaron Lee Lambert, Matthew McKenna, Jo Morris, Tanya Robb, Ashley Robinson, Vicki Lee Taylor, Gary Tushaw, Adam Vaughan and Stuart Winter.
Sunset Boulevard is the second production in the partnership between English National Opera (ENO) and the GradeLinnit Company. With music by Andrew Lloyd Webber and book and lyrics by Don Black and Christopher Hampton, Sunset Boulevard is produced by arrangement with The Really Useful Group Ltd and is based on the original Paramount film by Billy Wilder.
Lonny Price directs the strictly limited run of 43 performances at ENO’s London Coliseum which has press night on 4 April and its final performance on 7 May. The full ENO orchestra appears on stage alongside the cast in this semi-staged production. Orchestrations are by David Cullen and Andrew Lloyd Webber with choreography by Stephen Mear, set designs by James Noone, costume designs by Tracy Christensen, Glenn Close’s costume designs by Anthony Powell, sound by Mick Potter and lighting by Mark Henderson. Musical director is Michael Reed who also conducts.
Based on Billy Wilder’s classic film, Sunset Boulevard originally premiered in London at the Adelphi Theatre in 1993, where it ran for almost four years and played to nearly two million people. It went on to open on Broadway in 1994 to what was then, the biggest advance in Broadway history, $37.5 million.
Sunset Boulevard will be presented by Michael Linnit and Michael Grade for Gate Ventures PLC with ENO. Johnny Hon is executive producer.
In March 2015 ENO and the GradeLinnit Company presented the critically acclaimed sell-out run of Sweeney Toddwith Emma Thompson and Bryn Terfel in the inaugural production of their partnership.
Book Tickets for Sunset Boulevard: wwwmusicaltheatrereview.entstix.com/tickets/sunset-boulevard
Readers may also be interested in:
Sunset Boulevard – Glenn Close on making her West End debut at ENO – Feature