Kander and Ebb’s The Rink to return to the London stage

Kander and Ebb’s The Rink will return to the London stage for the first time in 20 years.

The new production of The Rink will play at Southwark Playhouse for a limited season from 25 May to 23 June 2018 and will be directed by Adam Lenson and choreographed by Fabian Aloise.

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.

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.

Adam said of directing The Rink, “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.”

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.

The Rink will run at Southwark Playhouse from 25 May to 23 June 2018.


Director, Adam Lenson tells us about the return of the madcap Quentin Dentin Show

Director, Adam Lenson has had a busy few weeks, with the brand new musical Superhero at Southwark Playhouse opening to critical acclaim and The Quentin Dentin Show arriving back on the London stage due to popular demand, this time at the Tristan Bates Theatre, writes Nicky Sweetland.

Director, Adam Lenson

The latter has been Billed as the ‘Rocky Horror show for the new millennium and has continued to grow in popularity following a successful run at Edinburgh and at above the Arts in London. Adam tells me,

“It’s a really unique show. It’s unlike anything I’ve worked on before but I mean that in the best possible sense. It’s a mixture of very real topics but handled in a surreal way”

The Quentin Dentin Show follows a regular couple, which have become despondent with their dull life, but just when things take a turn for the worse a strange being from their radio pops out to save them.

“It’s about happiness and relationships, the noise of modern living, the oddness of being a human being but transposed with this heightened surreal energy, which I find enthralling and confusing in equal measure.” Adam explains, “It sounds crazy and it sounds like a really weird set up for a show, but it sort of makes sense when you’re watching it, I think.”

The satirical musical features a live rock band, with a soundtrack incorporating styles of music ranging from 50s and 60s doowap pastiche up to modern rock fusion and promises to give audiences a night of escapism.

“There’s a heightened juxtaposition of the real and the unreal, which musical theatre is really good at.”

The Quentin Dentin Show is at the Tristan Bates Theatre until 29 July