TORONTO THEATRE NEWS
Mirvish new season includes We will Rock you, The Rat Pack, Wicked, Da Kink In My Hair.
(Tuesday, March 23, 2004)
Mirvish’s new season will bring much excitement to fans of Toronto musical theatre. This years line up demonstrates that Mirvish is striving hard to bring world-class theatre to Toronto. The new season includes four musicals and two comedies. Mirvish managed to secure a 'first-touring-stop' in Toronto for three hit musicals from London’s West End and Broadway.
The line up includes the London hit musical based on the songs of Queen, We will Rock you. Also, Mirvish is producing the current Broadway hit, Wicked. They are also bringing to Toronto the musical that features performances by Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis, The Rat Pack. As well, there will be a musical that tells the story of a Korean Queen sung in Korean, The Last Empress. Further, a Toronto Fringe Festival hit makes it to the big stage, Da Kink In My Hair, and finally, Frank McCourt’s A Couple of Blaguards.
While some media managed to find out that the current Broadway hit Wicked will be part of the new Mirvish season, the industry was caught by surprise by the announcement that the new season will include big hits like We will Rock You.
The Mirvish season will start off early in August with the Korean musical, The Last Empress. This musical, which will be sung in its original language with English supertitles, tells the rags-to-riches story of the Korean Queen Min.
In September 2004, Mirvish will present, The Rat Pack, the musical that recreates the long gone nightclub at the Sands Hotel in Las Vegas in 1960. The musical focuses on the time when Frank Sinatra was shooting the movie Ocean Eleven, and he and other world famous performers of the 60s, Sammy Davis, Dean Martin got together from time to time to perform on stage at the Sands Hotel. Some of their appearances were non-scheduled, and their performances turned the Sands into a world-famous-popular nightspot.
In November 2004, Mirvish will present Frank McCourt’s A Couple of Blaguards. The play will makes it Canadian premiere in Toronto. Frank McCourt is the author of the phenomenally popular Angela’s Ashes and ’Tis.
Da Kink In My Hair, the sold out Toronto Fringe hit in 2001, that last played in Toronto in June 2003 at the Theatre Passe Muraille, will be back in Toronto as part of the Mirvish season in January 2005. Through the use of uncensored monologues, music and dance, Da Kink In My Hair explores the story of the hardships of six black women.
Wicked, the current Broadway musical hit, despite lukewarm reviews from critics, will make its Canadian premiere in March 2005. The music was written by Stephen Schwartz who was also the composer for other hit musicals such as Pippin, Godspell and The magic Show. The musical is based on the best selling novel by Gregory McguireWicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West . It is a story about the friendship of two girls who meet in the land of Oz. Elbhapa was born with green skin. She is smart, but always misunderstood. She later becomes the Wicked Witch of the East. Ginlda; however, who is beautiful, ambitious and popular, but self-centered becomes the Good witch of the North.
We will Rock you, currently a hit musical in London, is based on the songs of Queen. It will have its North American premiere in May 2005 in Toronto. The musical tells of a future world where everything is globalized. Rock N’ Roll music, and all musical instruments, are banned by the government. Young kids rebel with the music by Queen.
Mirvish has not yet announced if any of the shows this season will be open-ended. In the last couple of seasons, Mirvish has brought in at least one major production for an open-ended run - there was The Producers two seasons ago, and Hairspray last season. Before the announcement of the 2004/2005 season most media guessed that Wicked, just like Mamma Mia, would very likely play in Toronto with an open ended run since Toronto will be the touring production’s first stop.
Send questions and comments to the HipToronto Webmaster
Copyright ï¿½ 2003 - 2004 HipToronto Press. All Rights Reserved.