Twenty years after its debut on Broadway, Jonathan Larson’s smash hit musical Rent will be brought to life on the stage of the Grand Opera House, York.
Grand Opera House, York
Fri Aug 26-Sat Aug 27
Rent tells the story of a group of bohemians living in East Village, New York, and focuses on the trials and tribulations of every day life of Mark and Roger – two roommates.
Mark, a love-struck nerd, documents the world around him as he narrates the story. Meanwhile Roger, an aspiring rock musician, struggles to embrace all of life’s moments.
The story follows the pair and their group of friends, Mimi, Collins, Angel, Maureen and Joanne, as they deal with love, loss and the increasing threat of the HIV/AIDS epidemic.
This particular production of Rent is brought to you by The York Orchard Theatre Company under director Justine Hughes, following the success of her recent productions in York including Jekyll & Hyde the Musical, The Phantom of the Opera and Little Shop of Horrors.
All-important assistant direction comes from Katie Rose for whom it will be her last show in York. The band and cast will be led by recent York University music graduate Ryan Durkan, this production being his second time as musical director.
The direction team’s vision has been expertly realised by production designers Luke Hutchinson and Megan Conway who received great critical praise for their recent work together on Little Shop of Horrors at the Joseph Rowntree Theatre. Expect to see some visually brilliant choreography crafted by Rachel Dennison.
The cast features some familiar faces in York theatre. The lead role of Mark Cohen will be skilfully taken by Sam Lightfoot-Loftus who has recently appeared as Enjolras in Les Miserables, Raoul in The Phantom of the Opera and Orin Scrivello in Little Shop of Horrors.
Brooding and haunted
Josh Eldridge-Smith will play alongside him as the brooding and haunted musician Roger who falls in love with exotic dancer and drug addict Mimi Marquez, played by Beth Stevens.
Britain’s Got Talent semi-finalist Richard Bayton will take on the challenging role of Collins alongside Matthew Dangerfield as Angel. Other prominent roles in the show are taken by Conor Mellor (Benny), Rosie Winter (Maureen) and Sophie Walmsley (Joanne).
The show only runs for two nights so make sure you don’t miss out on tickets.