HOLLYWOOD classic Singin' in the Rain comes to the Alhambra stage this summer, following a smash hit run in the West End.
The show uses half a mile of flexible pipe work, a 10 tonne water tank and a water system that creates a downpour from above and flooding from below the stage - ‘raining’, and recycling, more than 12,000 litres of downpour per performanc.
Produced by Stage Entertainment UK in association with Chichester Festival Theatre, it stars former Emmerdale actor Maxwell Caulfield as studio boss RF Simpson. Set against the era when silent movies were making way for talkies, the popular musical follows the fortunes of Don Lockwood, a silent movie star with everything he could wish for - fame, adulation and a well-publicised ‘romance’ with his co-star, Lina Lamont. But Hollywood is about to change forever; there's a rumour in the studio of a new kind of film, where the actors actually talk - and sing and dance. Can Don and the "uniquely voiced" Lina make the transition, and will chorus girl Kathy Selden fulfil her dream of stardom and capture Don’s heart along the way?
Former Coronation Street actress Vicky Binns, who played ill-fated Molly Dobbs, plays starlet Lina Lamont, James Leece is Don Lockwood and Amy Ellen Richardson is Kathy Selden.
Maxwell Caulfield is best known to TV audiences as dashing Mark Wylde in Yorkshire soap Emmerdale. He also played Dr Jim Brodie in both Casualty and Holby City, and was Miles Colby in 1980s American soap operas Dynasty and The Colbys. His film work includes cult classic Grease 2, starring opposite Michelle Pfeiffer, and his theatre credits include playing Billy Flynn in Chicago in the West End and on Broadway, An Inspector Calls at the National Theatre and The Rocky Horror Show on a UK tour.
“I am beyond thrilled to be hitting the road with Singin’ in the Rain," says Maxwell. "As a huge fan of the original movie, the chance to bring this story to life on stage is something I couldn’t pass up. It’ll be great visiting some of the beautiful theatres on the tour; some I’ve been to previously and some are new for me. Theatre work is a huge passion of mine and, having dealt with a few studio bosses in my time, I relish the opportunity to play RF Simpson in this glorious production."
Vicky Binns played Molly Dobbs in Coronation Street for five years, until her dramatic exit during the famous tram crash episode, commemorating the Street's 50th anniversary, watched by more than 16 million people. Her other TV credits include Ollie Reynolds in Emmerdale and The Mill on Channel 4.
Of Singin' in the Rain, she says: "To be in a musical of this scale and quality is a dream job for me. I was blown away when I saw this production in London, so it's a thrill to bring it straight from the West End to Bradford. If, like me, you have seen and loved the film, it's a real treat to see how it can be brought so lavishly to the stage. If you haven't seen it, what a way to experience the story for the first time. The part of Lina Lamont is a gift of a role as the writing is packed with humour, pathos and, well, 'fabulousness'!”
Based on the classic Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer film, the production has had four Olivier Award nominations and has played to more than 750,000 audience members, some leaving the theatre a little wetter than when they arrived! Its lively score Make ‘em Laugh, Good Morning, Moses Supposes and Singin’ in the Rain.
* Singing' in the Rain runs at the Alhambra from September 2 - 13. Tickets are available on (01274) 432000 or visit bradford-theatres.co.uk