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Andrew Lincoln in rehearsals for In Camera A Christmas Carol at The Old Vic. (Photo Credit: Manual Harlan)

Andrew Lincoln in rehearsals for In Camera A Christmas Carol at The Old Vic. (Photo Credit: Manuel Harlan)

London Theatre News Today: Monday 7 December

Hira Desai

By Hira Desai First Published 7 December 2020, Last Updated 8 December 2020

George Orwell’s iconic novel, Animal Farm, to become a new stage musical written by Olivier Award-winning playwright James Graham

James Graham backstage at the 2018 Olivier AwardsWinner of Best New Comedy James Graham backstage at the 2018 Olivier Awards

Adam Spiegel is thrilled to announce today that he is developing a new musical based on George Orwell’s masterpiece Animal Farm.

The new musical is written by the multi award-winning playwright James Graham (This House, Quiz) in collaboration with Alan Menken (The Little Mermaid, Aladdin, Beauty and The Beast, Sister Act) and lyricist Glenn Slater (The Little Mermaid, Sister Act, School of Rock).

Described as a ‘Chilling Fairy Tale’, the musical is currently in development and planning a series of workshops in 2021. It will make its World Premiere in London’s West End thereafter.

James Graham said: “To be working on Animal Farm, one of the greatest political fables of the 20th Century, with this team of Alan and Glenn, one of the greatest in musical theatre, is both a sheer delight, and also a real responsibility. Orwell’s themes of power and misinformation, corruption and ideological divides resonate strongly today. We want this gothic fairytale to open them

All further production information, including the theatre where Animal Farm will be staged, will be announced at a later date. Stay tuned as we will keep you posted as we receive new updates.


First Look: Rehearsal images from The Old Vic’s A Christmas Carol

A selection of rehearsal images have just been released for this year’s OLD VIC: IN CAMERA version of Jack Thorne’s A Christmas Carol starring Andrew Lincoln as Ebenezer Scrooge.

Directed by Matthew Warchus, the festive favourite returns for its fourth year and this time will be streamed live from The Old Vic stage from 12-24 December for just 16 performances. As with previous OLD VIC: IN CAMERA streams, the empty auditorium will be the show’s backdrop but this production will be, for the first time in the series, presented as a full-scale show with live musicians, theatrical lighting, set and costumes, and with a cast of 18 performers.

Click here to book your tickets and for more virtual theatre fixes, head over to our online calendar here.


Eddie Izzard to perform his latest stand up show Wunderbar in German and French this month

Eddie Izzard continues his relationship with Riverside Studios, bringing his latest stand-up comedy show Wunderbar to the venue on 19 and 20 December. In 2019, after first developing the show in French and German, Eddie’s latest Stand-up Comedy show Wunderbar toured the world. UK audiences will have the rare opportunity to see them performed in the languages they were written in – with performances in German of Wunderbar Auf Deutsch at 5pm; followed both days by Wunderbar En Français at 7pm.

Wunderbar joins Eddie’s performance of Dickens’ Great Expectations as part of Riverside Studio’s socially distanced Christmas season.

Interim Creative Director, Rachel Tackley today said, “It’s so wonderful (pun intended!) to be working with Eddie again and to welcome our European friends to Riverside. I’m looking forward to testing out my French and German on what will be a raucous evening of LIVE comedy.”


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a christmas carol alan menken glenn slater james graham Old Vic Riverside Studios

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While theatres are currently closed, various venues and productions are making announcements for their individual shows, including cancellations and rescheduled performances. Please check with the individual shows for details.