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Marilyn set for the Apollo stage

Published 4 February 2009

A dance musical celebrating the iconic actress and sex symbol Marilyn Monroe will play at the Apollo theatre for a limited season this summer.

Choreographed by Laurence Olivier Award winner Peter Schaufuss, Marilyn stars British ballerina Zara Deakin in the title role. The production charts the eventful and rocky life of the world’s most famous blond bombshell, from the actress’s troubled childhood growing up with a schizophrenic mother and an absent father, to her rise to fame, complete with controversy and high profile love affairs.

With a career spanning just 16 years, Monroe starred in classic films including Some Like It Hot, Gentlemen Prefer Blonds, How To Marry A Millionaire and The Seven Year Itch, making a total of 29 movies. As well as acting, Monroe was a singer and model, remaining one of the most iconic pin-ups in history. Married to the famous baseball player Joe DiMaggio and later to the playwright Arthur Miller, Monroe died in 1962, aged just 36.

Schaufuss, an international ballet star in the 1970s and 1980s, formed his own company in 1997 after enjoying a career as Artistic Director of both the London Festival Ballet (now the English National Ballet) and Deutsch Oper Berlin. His most recent work for the London stage was 2008’s Divas, a show inspired by the lives of Edith Piaf, Marlene Dietrich and Judy Garland. Schaufuss’s previous productions include the controversial Diana – The Princess and Satisfaction, which was choreographed to the music of the Rolling Stones.

Marilyn marks Deakin’s third appearance on the West End stage. Having trained at the Royal Ballet School, Deakin danced with the English National Ballet and Deutsche Oper Berlin before joining The Peter Schaufuss Company, where she has won leading roles in over 19 productions, playing Diana in Diana – The Princess and Marlene Dietrich in Divas.

With a company of 15 dancers, Marilyn includes songs from Monroe’s most famous films and performances, including Happy Birthday, Mr President, and My Heart Belongs To Daddy. The limited season of 11 performances runs from 3 June to 13 June at the Apollo theatre.

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