Kneehigh takes ‘Umbrellas’ to West End

Cast includes Joanna Riding, Meow Meow, Andrew Durand

LONDON — U.K. legit company Kneehigh (“Brief Encounter”) will bring its previously announced stage version of the movie tuner “The Umbrellas of Cherbourg” to the West End in March, following its February tryout at regional house The Curve in Leicester.

Helmed by a.d. Emma Rice, the adaptation of the Jacques Demy and Michel Legrand sung-through movie, which won the Cannes Film Festival’s Palme d’Or, stars Joanna Riding (“Carousel”) and, in the roles of the lovers originally played by Catherine Deneuve and Nino Castelnuovo, international cabaret performer Meow Meow and U.S. thesp Andrew Durand (“Spring Awakening’), making his U.K. debut.

Legrand’s Oscar-nommed score features new English lyrics by Sheldon Harnick (“She Loves Me,” “Fiddler on the Roof”) with designs by Lez Brotherston and lighting by Malcolm Rippeth. Produced by Daniel Sparrow and Mike Walsh Prods., Curve Leicester and City Lights International, in association with Be Yu Prods., the production previews at the Gielgud from March 5 ahead of a March 22 opening.

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