Crazy For You at the Open Air Theatre in Regent’s Park, London is moving full-steam ahead and looking great. I spent last week in the UK and had a wonderful time in rehearsals. They were held at the Toynbee Studios on Commercial Street, deep in the heart of the commercial district of London.
The cast of this production is absolutely top notch. Sean Plamer and Clare Foster star as Bobby Child and Polly Baker, Kim Medcalf plays Irene, Michael McKell is Lank and David Burt plays Bela Zangler. The entire ensemble is fantastically good, and Tim Sheader , Stephen Mears and Gareth Valentine - the director, choreographer and music director - are doing a terrific job making the production feel fresh and vital.
The rest of the week was packed with meetings, meals with old friends and great evenings at the theatre. I had dinner one evening with my dear friend Chris Luscombe who just had a big triumph with his revival of JB Priestley’s When We Are Married on the West End and is about to start rehearsals next week for a tour of The Madness of King George III. (His production of The Merry Wives of Windsor for The Globe Theatre was shown in movie theaters all over the U.S. recently.) I also went to opening night of Yes, Prime Minister and met one of the the playwrights, Johanthan Lynn. In my view he's one of the great comedy writers and directors of our time and it was a privilege to see him there. On my way past the Haymarket Theatre, I bumped into (read “we almost ran into each other”) Tom Stoppard and we chatted briefly. I also saw Lend Me The Tenor the Musical, which is running at the Gielgud Theatre in the West End. Everyone did a terrific job and I was thrilled to meet the cast afterwards. They were fantastic. Towards the end of the week, I did several interviews with the British press, one of which is to be aired on the Elaine Paige show for her Sunday show on BBC Radio 2. (I'll let you know in advance when the show airs.)
All in all, a very wonderful week. I'm looking forward to heading back to London soon.