• ‘Singin’ in the Rain’ splashes to life in Manila

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    Grant Almirall as Don Lockwood

    Grant Almirall as Don Lockwood

    As the musical’s name would suggest, there is singing and rain, and the two collide beautifully. Another critically acclaimed production from London’s West End comes to Manila this August, the ever-popular musical Singin’ in the Rain.

    Co-presented in Manila by Visa Entertainment, the musical opens on August 20 and will play for a strictly limited season at The Theatre, Solaire.

    Set in 1927, it tells the story, made famous by Gene Kelly and Debbie Reynolds in the iconic 1952 MGM movie, of the first Hollywood musical, when the silver screen found its voice and left silent movies—and some of its stars—behind. This spectacular production is packed full of the charm, romance, comedy and Tinseltown glamour of one of the world’s best-loved movies and features all the songs from the glorious MGM score including “Good Morning,” “Make ‘em Laugh,” “Moses Supposes,” and the classic “Singin’ in the Rain.”

    With so many delightful moments leading up to the show’s iconic tune there is never any doubt that it’s going to be carried off in style—but Gene Kelly’s song and dance routine from the 1952 film has such legendary status that reproducing it on stage is not without risk.

    As well as glorious songs, the movie’s choreography is brought to life, and with the help of 12,000 liters of water, the audience can enjoy one of the most iconic dance routines live on stage.

    Audience members sitting on the first three rows of the theatre will be in for a one-of-a-kind experience. Called “The Splash Zone,” and appropriately so, people will get treated to a generous amount of rain water from the show during some of the dance numbers.

    “You watch from the back of the stalls and at the interval, they’re all talking to each other like they’re comparing war wounds just to see who got the wettest. I’d say people really, really love it,” says resident rainmaker and technical director Richard Blacksell.

    Bethany Dickson returns to the stage as Kathy Selden

    Bethany Dickson returns to the stage as Kathy Selden

    “We drop 12,000 liters of water in the show. So that’s 12 tons of water that we drop on them over the course of two numbers—the first one being the iconic ‘Singin’ in the Rain,’ as done by Gene Kelly and they see it again in the finale because it would be such a shame not to,” explains Blacksell quite ecstatically.

    “We’re certainly, relatively, environmentally friendly,” he adds. “All of the water is UV-treated, sand-filtered, and chlorinated. Essentially, it’s the same machinery you would have in a swimming pool, except we’ve got it in the air.”

    Making a splash from the moment it premiered, this sensational production extended its run at the Chichester Festival Theatre in the UK due to unprecedented public demand, before transferring to the famous Palace Theatre in London in 2012.

    Now, after a sell-out West End season, unparalleled praise from critics and audiences alike, four Olivier Award nominations, and a major UK tour,

    Singin’ in the Rain is set to delight Philippine audiences. Grant Almirall, who plays Don Lockwood, has suffered an injury and will be unable to perform at this time.

    In his absence, the role will be performed by Duane Alexander, for the Singapore and Manila season. Duane was part of the Original South African cast of Cats, performing the roles of Coricopat, Mungojerrie, and Skimbleshanks in many wonderful countries including Lebanon, Malaysia, South Korea, China, Scandinavia, Qatar, and Taipei.

    After a sell-out West End season, unparalleled praise from critics and audiences alike, four Olivier Award nominations, and a major UK tour,‘Singin’ in the Rain’ is set to delight Philippine audiences

    After a sell-out West End season, unparalleled praise from critics and audiences alike, four Olivier Award nominations, and a major UK tour,‘Singin’ in the Rain’ is set to delight Philippine audiences

    Musical star Bethany Dickson, who has recently wowed audiences across China, New Zealand and Singapore with her performance as Maria in The Sound of Music, returns to the stage as the aspiring actress Kathy Selden.

    Don Lockwood is a silent movie star with everything he could want—fame, adulation and a well-publicized “romance” with his co-star Lina Lamont. But Hollywood is about to change forever. There is rumor in the studio of a new kind of film, where the actors actually talk . . . and sing . . . and dance. Can Don and the uniquely voiced Lina make the transition and will chorus girl Kathy Selden fulfil her dream of stardom and capture Don’s heart along the way?

    With high-energy choreography, sumptuous set design and costumes, a superb score and a joyous story Singin’ in the Rain showers musical lovers with everything they could wish for in a hit musical.

    Tickets are on sale through TicketWorld (891-9999 or www.ticketworld.com.ph.)

    Singin’ in the Rain is presented in Manila by Lunchbox Theatrical Productions, Concertus Manila, Michael Cassel Group, David Atkins Enterprises and Pieter Toerien Productions. It is produced by Stage Entertainment and Chichester

    Festival Theatre. Shows run every Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday at 8 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday at 3 and 8 p.m.

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