30 December 2018

Amelie The Musical

A couple of days ago my friend informed me that they had adapted Amelie into a musical and I FREAKED OUT. I cannot tell you how much I love that film. I was studying in France when it came out in 2001 and remember going to see it multiple times. As a dreamer, a romantic, a writer it appealed to me on every level - it's charm, surrealism, humour and of course Audrey Tatou emerging as a modern day Audrey Hepburn. 

Amelie The Musical opened on Broadway for a limited run last year, with music by Daniel Messe, and lyrics by Messe and Nathan Tyson (book by Craig Lucas). The 2001 international hit was directed by Jean-Pierre Jeunet and was nominated for five Academy Awards (it won two BAFTAs). 

The plot is pretty similar to the film, we see how Amelie is negatively affected by her germaphobe father and neurotic mother, who is tragically killed when a suicidal tourist jumps off Notre Dame. False health concerns means that she is homeschooled and cut off from the outside world, leading her to develop a pretty creative imagination. Amelie gets bored living with her disconnected father and eventually gets a job as a waitress at Les Deux Moulins, alongside her quirky co-workers and even quirkier customers. On the night of Princess Diana's death she finds a box of childhood treasures belonging to the man who used to own her apartment and goes on a mission to return it. She meets Nino, her soul mate and plays a game of cat-and-mouse trying to find him again. Her artist neighbour helps her to find the owner of the box and teaches her some things along the way.

Singing in the rain
A dream sequence featuring Elton John has been added, alongside the original plot lines where Amelie sends her father's garden gnome on a round-the-world trip and sets people up in the cafe. The ending is also slightly different (but luckily not too much). Songs include opener "Times Are Hard For Dreamers," "Where The Booth Goes Bright" (relating to the infamous photo booth in the film) and "Halfway" about her difficulties in getting close to people. 

Hiding at the Les Deux Moulins
The production starts its UK tour at the Watermill Theatre in Newbury (11th April to 18th May 2019) before embarking on an extensive UK tour from 20th May (Wimbledon, Exeter, Wycombe, Oxford, Edinburgh, Bradford, Leicester, Birmingham, Glasgow and Woking) with other venues to be confirmed (come to the North East, s'il vous plait)! 

Buy your tickets here 

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