GT Stage

Coming around again

Musical re-emerges in London – 44 years on

If Carly Simon taught us anything it’s that, if you’re willing to play the game, it’ll be coming around again. So it is we have a new run of Dear World the musical. Over 4 decades since it was last performed, Charing Cross Theatre has, boldly, re-staged Jenny Harman’s original Broadway production, one that failed to inspire American critics (and public). Back then, on the night of the first release, 6 February 1969, Richard Nixon was president of the USA, with Blackberry Way by The Move topping the charts in the UK. Dear World had just 132 performances between February and May 1969, after being previewed 45 times. Times have changed. Will the play do any better this time round?

The revival features acclaimed American actor Betty Buckey (CATS) and if anyone can turn Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee’s book into a successful and viable musical, it’s her. Buckley plays the Madwoman of Chaillot, driven wild by flashing thoughts of an old lover and regret. Happens to us all. When oil is discovered lurking under the streets of Paris, the Madwoman and her merry men must prevent rampant businessmen from destroying not only her home, but the entire city of Paris. Director and choreographer Gillian Lynne will presumably be sprinkling her magic on proceedings (as she did with Phantom of the Opera, CATS and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang) and Paul Nicholas brings some more Brit factor as the male lead.

Fancy dresses. Old women. Camp capers. What more do you want?

Dear World runs till the end of March 2013. For performance times and tickets visit

Words:Tom Deveson

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