PRESS RELEASE FEBRUARY 2004
Michael Crawford, who returns to the West End stage 18 years after he starred in The Phantom of the Opera, is to reunite with Andrew Lloyd Webber and star in his new musical, The Woman in White.
Crawford will play the charismatic Italian Count Fosco, one of the wittiest and cleverest villains ever written, and will star alongside multi-award winning actress Maria Friedman as the courageous heroine Marian. Maria this week picked up her third Olivier award for her performance in Ragtime.
Andrew Lloyd Webber says, “I am delighted that Michael has accepted the delicious role of Count Fosco, a character of overpowering charisma and ingenuity, and one of the best villains in Victorian fiction. It is fantastic that we have lured such a great international star back to the West End where he belongs.”
The Woman in White opens at the Palace Theatre on 15th September, with previews from 28th August.
Freely adapted from Wilkie Collins’s sensational Victorian thriller, The Woman in White brings to the stage a musical of startling brilliance. A dashing young man, employed as the art tutor to two devoted sisters, is stranded at a remote railway cutting. Out of the darkness looms a woman, a mysterious figure dressed in white, desperate to share a chilling secret. He and the sisters soon find themselves trapped in a web of betrayal and greed, the victims of a seemingly flawless crime. Together they will need all their resourcefulness and courage to outwit a hugely charismatic and ingenious villain, Count Fosco. As the compelling plot twists and turns, low villainy vies with high romance in a world where nothing is as it first appears and where it is impossible to know who to trust.
This new musical has been adapted for the stage by Charlotte Jones, whose award-winning plays include Humble Boy, with lyrics by David Zippel, whose credits include City of Angels and the Disney classics Mulan and Hercules. Andrew Lloyd Webber has composed the captivating and romantic score. Internationally renowned director Trevor Nunn, responsible for, amongst others, Cats, Starlight Express, Les Misérables and, most recently, Anything Goes, will direct the production.
Wilkie Collins’s The Woman in White was one of the most influential and successful Victorian novels and quickly became a phenomenon. Since its publication in 1860, it has never been out of print and generations of readers have been thrilled by its suspense and excitement.
The Palace Theatre Box Office is now open on 0870 895 5579.
The Woman in White is produced by Sonia Friedman Productions and The Really Useful Theatre Company.
Photo by Alan Davidson –
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