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Willows gets West End transfer

Published July 9, 2013

For the first time ever the Royal Opera House will commercially transfer one of its productions into the West End, with The Wind In The Willows playing at the Duchess theatre this Christmas.

Directed and choreographed by Will Tuckett, the critically acclaimed production will play from 11 December (press night 16 December) to 1 February at the West End venue.

Based on the children’s classic by Kenneth Grahame, The Wind In The Willows retells the adventures of four woodland friends – Toad, Ratty, Mole and Badger – as the serenity of their riverbank is rocked by a speeding car, galloping caravan and racing train, and criminal deeds are cooked up in the depths of the Wild Wood.

Inspired by the music of George Butterworth with a score by Martin Ward, the escapades of reckless Toad and his long-suffering friends are brought to life using dance, song, music and puppetry.

The production, which was the first festive show to be commissioned for the Royal Opera House’s Linbury studio theatre when it premiered more than a decade ago, has since received three revivals and played more than 100 performances in the capital.

Talking about the production’s transfer, Tuckett said: “I’m absolutely thrilled that, this Christmas, The Wind In The Willows is moving into the West End. It’s a tremendously exciting step and it makes me very happy that this work can now be seen by a whole new audience.”

The production, which has been created specifically for families, will open at the Duchess theatre following the West End transfer of The Resistible Rise Of Arturo Ui starring Olivier Award winner Henry Goodman, which plays from 18 September to 7 December following a successful run at the Chichester Festival Theatre last year.

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