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Louis Maskell as Grinpayne in The Grinning Man (Photo: Simon Annand)

Louis Maskell as Grinpayne in The Grinning Man (Photo: Simon Annand)

New musical The Grinning Man transfers to Trafalgar Studios

First Published 6 October 2017, Last Updated 6 October 2017

Bristol Old Vic’s critically acclaimed new musical The Grinning Man will transfer to Trafalgar Studios this Winter, along with original cast leads Louis Maskell and Julian Bleach.

Based on the Victor Hugo (Les Misérables) novel The Man Who Laughs, the widely lauded new musical, whose star Maskell is amongst the nominees for Best Performance In A Musical at the UK Theatre Awards next week, will open in the West End from 5 December 2017.

The Grinning Man is a gothic musical love story set at a fairground, bringing to life a fantastical world with a dark heart. Visually spectacular, enchanting and ultimately uplifting, the musical stars Maskell in the title role of Grinpayne, a strange new act who arrives at the fair with a story to tell – who is he, and how did he get his hideous smile? And who is Barkilphedro (Bleach), the vengeful clown?

A tale of an abandoned child with a terrible secret, The Grinning Man promises a unique delight in the ilk of Nineties hit Shockheaded Peter, with all the full-blooded emotion of Les Misérables.

The Grinning Man is directed by the Tony Award-winning Tom Morris, and reunites him with two puppeteers who began their careers inside Joe and Topthorn in the original production of Morris’ War Horse – Finn Caldwell and Toby Olié – now leading their own puppetry company Gyre & Gimble. Book is by Kneehigh writer Carl Grose, and music and lyrics are by Tim Phillips and Marc Teitler.

The producers of The Grinning Man are delighted to present the show in a specially configured space in Trafalgar Studios for an open-ended run from 5 December.

Tickets will go on sale on Wednesday 11 October.

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