Online service stream.theatre and Perfect Pitch are set to partner up and preview brand new work each month as part of a development programme for British Musical Theatre.
Rise:Up highlights the newest UK writing talent, and the initiative comes after a successful pilot in December. Driving contemporary musicals to wider audiences, each episode will feature a new musical that is currently in development, with two songs performed by West End performers.
stream.theatre will include this for free for audiences, as part of pre-show entertainment for all of their pre-booked content. Previous episodes will then be available on demand, as well as on the Rise:Up YouTube channel from 1 February.
New musicals include 42 Balloons by Jack Godfrey, featuring performances from Melanie La Barrie, Vicki Manser, Aaron Lee Lambert, Jack Shalloo, Georgie Westall, Madeline Charlemagne and Jake Halsey-Jones. The show tells the true story of Larry Walters and Carol Van Deusen, who, in July 1982, constructed an aircraft using a lawn-chair and 42 weather balloons and launched Larry 16,000 feet into the sky above LA. It is a story about lifelong dreams, and doing whatever it takes to achieve them.
In The Willows by P Burton Morgan, Keiran Merrick and Pippa Cleary will feature guest performances from Tim Mahendran, Sharon Rose and Hiba Elchikhe. Based on Kenneth Grahame’s popular animal tale, the musical is set in an urban British comprehensive school. It’s Mole’s first day and she is taken under the wing of hip-hop cool girl Rattie, her boyfriend Otter and the bling laden, rich-kid rapper Toad. A series of adventures ensue in which Mole learns both how to make friends and how to lose them – but ultimately how to find her voice and finally speak up about her troubled past.
February’s episode will feature John-Victor and Tamar Broadbent’s immersive musical Club Mex with Jade Johnson leading the cast. In Club Mex you are on the dancefloor in the heart of the action, joining Mel and her two best mates as they experience the highs, lows and hangovers of Cancun in a heart-warming coming-of-age comedy with an infectious, original musical score that fuses pop, dance and musical theatre.
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