Renowned Broadway, West End and film actress Caroline O’Connor will star as Anna in the first London revival in 20 years of Kander and Ebb’s THE RINK, having understudied the role of Angel in the 1988 London production of the show.
The new production of THE RINK will play at London’s Southwark Playhouse for a limited season from 25 May to 23 June 2018, with a press night on Tuesday 29 May. The role of Angel, along with further casting is to be announced.
Caroline O’Connor is currently starring as Countess Lily in the Broadway musical Anastasia. She is perhaps best known for playing Nini in Baz Luhrmann’s Oscar-winning film Moulin Rouge as well as Velma Kelly in Chicago on Broadway and in Australia and Mabel Normand in Mack and Mabel in the West End, for which she received a 1996 Olivier Award nomination for Best Actress in a Musical. Caroline’s other theatre roles include the one-woman play Bombshells (Arts Theatre, London) which was written especially for her and for which she received her second Olivier Award nomination, Hildy in On The Town (London Coliseum), End of the Rainbow (Sydney Opera House) and Edith Piaf in Piaf (Melbourne and Sydney). Caroline played Ethel Merman in the 2004 Cole Porter biopic De-Lovely.
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 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.
THE RINK has a book by Tony Award-winning Terrence McNally (Ragtime, Kiss of the Spider Woman, Master Class). This new production is directed by Adam Lenson and choreographed by Fabian Aloise, with musical direction by Joe Bunker and casting by Jacob Sparrow. THE RINK is produced by Jack Maple and Brian Zeilinger.