NATIONAL YOUTH MUSICAL THEATRE
ANNOUNCES AUGUST SEASONS AT:
The MCT @ Alleyn’s, London
“NYMT is the best youth music theatre in the world”
Andrew Lloyd Webber
National Youth Music Theatre is thrilled to announce its 2021 season, featuring three full productions
- THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME at Manchester Cathedral through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI) – a large-scale, inclusive production of one of Disney’s most epic musicals
- HENRIETTA a new musical, originally commissioned by NYMT for 2020.
- BILLY THE KID originally commissioned in 2017, reimagined for 2021 at The MCT @ Alleyn’s
- A KISS FOR CINDERELLA Residential Workshop
THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME
Based on the Victor Hugo novel & songs from the Disney film
Music by Alan Menken, Lyrics by Stephen Schwartz, Book by Peter Parnell
Wednesday 11th – Saturday 14th August
Performance Times – (Wed – Fri) 7:30PM, (Sat) 6:00PM. Matinees (Fri & Sat) 1:00PM.
NYMT is proud to present this inclusive production of The Hunchback of Notre Dame.
The heart of the stage version of Disney’s THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME is in the song Someday which Esmeralda sings in Act 2. In it she accepts the horrifying predicament that she finds herself in. She is powerless to change things instantly in society, but she hopes for a better future, which for her is one in which the Romany people are accepted and not persecuted.Director Alex Sutton says “For me that hope is exactly where theatre finds itself now. As we start to come out of the pandemic the theatre world is looking to ‘reset’ better, it is hopeful for a future in which all parts of it are inclusive, a theatre that engages with anti-racism, pride and with disability, that everyone working in it is employed fairly, regardless of disability, race, gender and sexuality and safe from bullying, persecution and harassment.
In the script Quasimodo is deaf, and Alex embraced the opportunity to cast a deaf actor in that role. He says “The challenge is then, how does that person sing this score? The question then becomes what is singing, what is music? As a hearing person who studied (believe it or not) analytical musicology, this challenges my very conception of music and how it is communicated. Sign language and BSL is going to permeate the entire show. Every show will start being BSL ‘interpreted’ at the side of the stage, but then we are going to play with that to create a truly integrated accessible version of it. Several members of the cast are deaf or are CODAs (child of deaf adult), and our wonderful choreographer Mark Smith, is a truly inspirational deaf choreographer”
Anthony O’Connor Director of Fundraising at Manchester Cathedral added “Manchester Cathedral is delighted to be able to host The Hunchback of Notre Dame. As we emerge from the Covid-19 pandemic this production will be a great opportunity for individuals, couples and families to gather in this medieval space to take in this wonderful production”
A New Musical by Katie Lam and Alex Parker
Commissioned by NYMT 2020
Wednesday 18th – Saturday 21st August
The MCT at Alleyn’s
Performance Times 7:30PM
Matinees (Fri & Sat) at 2:30PM
To Henrietta Janssen, things just don’t feel quite right. It’s more than the war –
growing up in Amsterdam, by the spring of 1945, she’s used to that.
It’s all the unanswered questions: why does her teacher tell her off whatever she does?
Why is there never enough to eat? Why doesn’t she feel like she fits in, even with her own family?
Why is the old lady on her way to school always so angry with her?
And why is there a boy in her neighbour’s window when they only have daughters?
Inspired by the true stories of love, sacrifice and bravery in the Netherlands during the Second World War, HENRIETTA is about a thirst for adventure, the need we all feel to establish our identity, and how ordinary people can be capable of extraordinary courage.
One of the things I love about NYMT is the company’s commitment to new writing and the opportunities for developing new work. It’s such an essential learning opportunity for young actors to be part of a musical in its infancy as it grows and develops. I’ve seen over the last six years how the young people’s brains are creatively stretched and challenged by the experience of being part of this kind of process and how it can really nurture an analytical eye on not just the production itself but the whole form of musical theatre. HENRIETTA is a very extraordinary piece of new British writing – the music is glorious, an epic score with some spine tingling moments. We have a cast of 33 young people and another 14 in the orchestra, as well as young people making up our teams of stage management and creative assistants. Kate Golledge, DIRECTOR Henrietta
Based on a true story from Katie Lam’s own family history Henrietta tells the story of a young girl living in occupied Amsterdam during the second world war. Henrietta lives with her mother, father, sister and brother and wants an adventure – until she gets one she didn’t bargain for. The work asks us to consider family, individualism and what it means to be brave.
About Alex Parker and Katie Lam:
Alex Parker (music) and Katie Lam (book and lyrics) are an award-winning British musical theatre writing team. Best friends since they were eight years old, Katie and Alex have written five musicals together: Henrietta, Am Dram (Leicester Curve), After You (London Coliseum, cast album available wherever you stream or download your music), The Railway Children (Cadogan Hall) and All Aboard (Electric).
Katie and Alex were recipients of the inaugural UK Emerging Writers Award from NYMT, and Artists in Residence at The Red House in Aldeburgh in 2019. They were commissioned to write the opening number for the WhatsOnStage Awards in 2015, 2016 and 2020. They took part in the Re:act scheme for new writers at what was then the St James Theatre.
BILLY THE KID
Music by Ben Morales Frost | Book and Lyrics by Richard Hough
Commissioned and originally produced by NYMT 2017
Wednesday 25th – Saturday 28th August
The MCT at Alleyn’s
Performance Times 7:30PM
Matinees (Fri & Sat) at 2:30PM
William Antrim is small for his age; he’s quiet and shy, which makes him an easy target for lazy bullies. But in his dreams, William Antrim is Billy the Kid, a courageous cowboy, riding the range with the sun in his eyes. An all-American hero. Now, if only his dreams could become a reality…
Billy the Kid is an adventure story, a magical, musical comedy set in a colourful world of cowboys and bandits, cactus trees and caballeros. Saddle-up for a journey back in time, to a land where the bravest heroes are only a whip-crack away! This is a show for all the family, smart enough for the most demanding young audience and silly enough for the grumpiest grown-ups.
I’m so excited to be directing Billy The Kid for NYMT this year. After the last sixteen months of uncertainty and living our lives over Zoom, it’s so incredibly exciting that we get to have a bunch of talented actors, creatives and our production team in a room together creating a show. All of our cast will have had such a huge disruption to their school/college/university/working life – so I’m really pleased that we’re able to provide three weeks of pure escapism as we delve into the Wild West of Billy The Kid. It’s such a feel-good, heart-warming, barn-storming show – exactly the kind of theatre we need right now. I can’t wait until the sound of the overture soars over the auditorium and transports our audience into another world – and allows our talented players to do the very thing they love, and the very thing they’ve missed so deeply. James Robert Moore, DIRECTOR Billy The Kid
About Ben Morales Frost and Richard Hough:
Ben Morales Frost Musical Theatre composing projects include Graham Greene’s Our Man In Havana (Watermill) and a new musical version of The Sorcerer’s Apprentice (Southwark Playhouse, James Seabright Productions), both written with Richard Hough. Other Frost & Hough shows include Billy The Kid (NYMT) and A Christmas Carol (Wellingborough). The Billy The Kid cast album reached #2 in the iTunes Soundtrack charts.
Working with composer Ben Morales Frost, Richard Hough has written book and lyrics for A Christmas Carol (The Castle Theatre, Wellingborough, directed by Luke Sheppard); Billy the Kid for the NYMT (which premiered at the Leicester Curve, directed by Kate Golledge); an adaptation of Graham Greene’s Our Man in Havana (opening at The Watermill Theatre in 2022, to be directed by Amy Draper); and a new musical fantasy inspired by Goethe’s The Sorcerer’s Apprentice (recorded at The Southwark Playhouse and later streamed online, directed by Charlotte Westenra).
“We are delighted to be able to host Henrietta and Billy The Kid at the MCT at Alleyn’s this summer. It’s wonderful to welcome back audiences to enjoy live performances in our facility with this exciting line-up of productions from the National Youth Music Theatre.” Oliver Watkins, Head of Commercial & Community Activities
A KISS FOR CINDERELLA RESIDENTIAL WORKSHOP
Winning submission for NYMT’s 2020 New Musical Workshop
Music by Jack Trzcinski | Book and lyrics by Annabel Mutale Reed
In addition to the three central pieces of work, and continuing NYMT’s series of workshops of new musicals in development, A Kiss for Cinderella is a fully-cast workshop and will form part of NYMT’s summer residential programme.
The work is an adaptation of J. M. Barrie’s 1916 play of the same name and follows Jane, a young girl from across the sea, and the refugee children she takes care of – Flo, Blue and Krista – in 1940s London during the Blitz. These girls have each brought their own version of the tale of Cinderella with them and are determined that Jane is the Cinderella the stories all tell about.