Twenty years after it was first seen in the West End, Kander and Ebb’s Tony and Olivier Award-winning Broadway musical THE RINK will get its first major London revival in the new year, running at Southwark Playhouse for a limited season from 25 May to 23 June 2018, with a press night on 29 May. This new production will be directed by Adam Lenson and choreographed by Fabian Aloise. Casting is still to be announced.
Anna, an Italian housewife who runs a roller-skating rink on the Eastern seaboard, is about to sell it to developers until her estranged daughter, Angel, returns after a long absence, hoping to save the rink and patch things up with her mother.
THE RINK has music by John Kander and lyrics by Fred Ebb, the creators of musicals such as Chicago, Cabaret, Kiss of the Spider Woman, and The Scottsboro Boys. It has a book by Tony Award-winning Terence McNally (Ragtime, Kiss of the Spider Woman, Master Class). The musical originally premiered on Broadway on 9 February 1984, starring Chita Rivera as Anna and Liza Minelli as Angel. Rivera won the Tony and Drama Desk Awards for her performance. The show premiered in London at the Cambridge Theatre on 17 February 1988, starring Josephine Blake and Diane Langton as Anna and Angel respectively.
Speaking about the new London revival, presented by Jack Maple Productions, director Adam Lenson said:
“I have long admired the ingenious work of Kander and Ebb and to get to direct this rarely seen masterpiece is a true privilege. Most people are only familiar with their most popular hits Chicago and Cabaret, but THE RINK is as innovative as it is underrated and truly pushes the form of musical theatre. I cannot wait for audiences to see this beautiful and complex story.”
Adam Lenson most recently directed 35mm: A Musical Exhibition (The Other Palace) and Superhero (Southwark Playhouse). His other recent directing credits include Whisper House (The Other Palace), Songs For A New World (St James Theatre, 20th Anniversary Production), The Sorrows of Satan (Tristan Bates Theatre), Disgraced (English Theatre Frankfurt) and Dark Tourism (Park Theatre). In 2016, Adam was the recipient of a Kevin Spacey Artist of Choice Award, for which he is currently developing Wasted, a new rock musical based on the Brontës which had a workshop production at West Yorkshire Playhouse in October 2016.
Fabian Aloise most recently choreographed the UK National Tour of Our House and the European Premiere of Stephen Schwartz’s Working at Southwark Playhouse. Fabian was resident choreographer on Matilda at the Cambridge Theatre, and associate choreographer on the Australian production. Prior to this, Fabian was associate choreographer to Arlene Phillips on We Will Rock You in Belgium, and associate choreographer to Ann Reinking for US and International tours of Fosse. He choreographed The 24 Hour Musical at The Old Vic for Kevin Spacey and Jamie Lloyd, and Off-West End productions of Bright Lights Big City and The Drowsy Chaperone.