Blood Broth­ers to open 2017 sea­son

The Tribune (NZ) - - YOUR EVENTS AND ENTERTAINMENT GUIDE -

Abbey Mu­si­cal Theatre (AMT) has cho­sen, as its first production for 2017, one that has a grip­ping story, great char­ac­ters and en­dur­ing mu­sic.

Willy Rus­sell’s Blood Broth­ers was writ­ten in the 1980s, has re­ceived the Olivier Award for Best New Mu­si­cal and is still en­joy­ing sell-out sea­sons around the world.

When it closed at the Phoenix Theatre, Lon­don, in 2012, its re­vival had run for 24 years and 10,000 per­for­mances, mak­ing it the third longestrun­ning mu­si­cal in West End his­tory. It’s been per­formed on Broad­way.

AMT’s Blood Broth­ers will run from March 2-19, 2017, at The Au­di­to­rium, Cen­ten­nial Drive.

Production man­ager John Spelman says Blood Broth­ers en­joyed a brief pro­fes­sional sea­son when it toured here 15 years ago. ‘‘It was per­formed to great ac­claim and has been on our minds ever since we es­tab­lished our home at The Au­di­to­rium’’

Au­di­tions were held ear­lier this month and AMT has as­sem­bled a strong cast of 11 ma­jor prin­ci­pals, two un­der­stud­ies and an en­sem­ble. The show marks Barry Jones’s first solo direc­tion for AMT al­though he co-di­rected CATS ear­lier this year. Barry is also mu­si­cal direc­tor.

The con­tem­po­rary story re­volves around two fra­ter­nal twins, Mickey and Ed­die, who were sep­a­rated at birth. One was raised in a wealthy fam­ily and the other by par­ents who were fi­nan­cially poor.

The twins’ dif­fer­ent back­grounds take them to op­po­site ends of the so­cial spec­trum, one be­com­ing a coun­cil­lor and the other un­em­ployed and in prison. Their love of the same girl causes huge emo­tion, con­flict and tragedy.

John says the story is dra­matic, en­gag­ing and con­tains some of the most mem­o­rable mu­si­cal theatre songs.

Blood Broth­ers will be staged at The Au­di­to­rium, March 2-19, 2017.

Book­ings at www.abbey­mu­si­calthe­atre.co.nz.

Blood Broth­ers Michael Doody (left) and Tyrell Beck work out with direc­tor Barry Jones.

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