A new musical comedy based on the StudioCanal Peter Sellers/Margaret Rutherford film The Smallest Show on Earth will launch a UK tour later this year.
The stage show, which has a book by Thom Southerland (who is also directing the production) and Paul Alexander, contains some of Irving Berlin’s greatest songs, including Blue Skies, Shakin’ the Blues Away, Let Yourself Go, Steppin’ Out with my Baby and How Deep is the Ocean, as well as some rediscovered gems.
Southerland said: “Berlin’s music provides the perfect accompaniment to our 1950s story, not only in lyric, but in style and period too.”
The UK tour of The Smallest Show on Earth will begin performances on 25th September at the Mercury Theatre, Colchester, before playing Coventry, High Wycombe, Glasgow, Plymouth, Crewe, Swansea and Malvern.
The cast of the new musical comedy will be led by Liza Goddard (Take Three Girls/Bergerac) as Mrs Fazackalee, Brian Capron (Coronation Street/Where the Heart Is) as Mr Quill, Haydn Oakley (Women on the Verge/The Book of Mormon) as Matthew Spenser and Laura Pitt-Pulford (The Sound of Music/Seven Brides for Seven Brothers) as Jean Spenser,
The cast also includes: Ricky Butt as Ethel Hardcastle, Philip Rham as Albert Hardcastle, Christina Bennington as Marlene Hardcastle, Sam O’Rourke as Tom Fazackalee and Matthew Crowe as Robin Carter, with Leo Andrew, Jacob Chapman, Matthew Dale, Nova Skipp and Leah West.
Newly-weds Matt and Jean Spenser inherit a cinema and think their fortune is made. But the Bijou, better known as the fleapit, is the victim of a dirty tricks campaign from its rival flashy neighbour The Grand. The Bijou’s benevolent manageress Mrs Fazackalee and unreliable projectionist Mr Quill combine with Matt and Jean to outwit the opposition and restore the Bijou to its former glory.
StudioCanal's The Smallest Show on Earth was a 1957 British Lion film written by William Rose and directed by Basil Dearden. It starred Peter Sellers as Mr Quill and Margaret Rutherford as Mrs Fazackalee, along with Virginia McKenna and Bill Travers as Matt and Jean.
The UK tour of The Smallest Show on Earth has costume design by David Woodhead, choreography by Lee Proud, lighting design by Howard Hudson, sound design by Andrew Johnson, musical supervision by Gareth Valentine, orchestrations by Mark Cumberland, musical direction by Mark Aspinall and casting by Will Burton CDG.
Photo Credit: Colin Bell