Next to Normal – Pulitzer Prize Winner at Black Swan, Perth

Next to Normal Black SwanPremiering at Perth in Western Australia at the Black Swan State Theatre Company on November 11, 2015 following three previews will be the highly original, brave and breath-taking musical Next to Normal.

The Pulitzer Prize winner for Drama and three time Tony Award winning rock musical is currently enthralling audiences on Broadway in the USA where the Black Swan State Theatre Company Director Adam Mitchell believed the “New York Times got it right calling Next to Normal an original, brave, breathtaking musical…

…he explained how it is a story for our time “… it deals with the fallout of a mum… losing her battle with mental illness. It‘s gritty, incredibly touching, funny and it’s full of hope.” Adam Mitchell said.

Other reviews have called it ‘heart-melting and sensitively crafted’ with beautiful songs that get to the heart of a deceptively complex story of a suburban family struggling to cope with crisis.

Receiving Tony Awards in 2009 for Best Score and Best Orchestration by Tom Kitt Next to Normal is the story of Diana Goodman, loving wife and mother who would like nothing more than for her husband Dan and their two children to get along like one big happy family.

They all live in a seemingly perfect suburban neighbourhood, but their struggles, like most families, are anything but normal.

They test and mock each other at every turn – but how are they meant to cope when one of them suffers from hallucinations?

Filled with music, fun and pathos, this play revolutionised the genre and is the most critically acclaimed musical since Rent.

Musical Director for this production David Young is debuting with the Black Swan company after working on Wicked in Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth, Singapore, Seoul, Auckland and Manila, followed by return seasons in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Perth.

IMAGE 2Songs like My Psychopharmacologist, Didn’t I See This Movie, Superboy and The Invisible Girl this world-class production is a prescription for topical contemporary entertainment.

Dad‘s an architect; Mom packs the kids lunches and pours their cereal; the daughter and son are bright, wise-cracking teens and on the surface they all appear to be a typical all around happy family.

And yet their lives are only ‘Next to Normal’ as the storyline takes audiences into the minds and hearts of each character.

The music by Tom Kitt, the Book and the Lyrics written by Brian Yorkey who received the 2009 Tony Award for Best Score for his work on Next to Normal.

It was some nine years in gestation, before it reached Broadway in 2009 and it was also nominated for the Tony Award for Best Book of a Musical

IMAGE 3The West Australian premiere by the Black Swan State Theatre Company is presented by special arrangement with Hal Leonard Australia Pty Ltd on behalf of Music Theatre International.

Directed by Adam Mitchell, the cast of six very talented performers include Shannen Alyce, Rachael Beck James Bell, Michael Cormick, Brendan Hanson and Joel Horwood. The choreography is by Claudia Alessi.

Rachel Beck plays Diana Goodman and her experience acrdoss stage and screen have brought her much acclaim as a vocal artist.

Rachael is widely remembered for her award-winning role as Belle opposite Hugh Jackman in Beauty and the Beast, as ‘Fantine’ in Les Miserables and ‘Rumpleteaser’ in Cats, both produced by Cameron Mackintosh.

Rachael‘s theatre credits for the STC include Summer Rain directed by Robyn Nevin, Secret Bridesmaid’s Business, A Little Night Music, ‘Lady Mortimer’ in Henry IV and Me and My Girl and her screen credits include City Homicide, Stingers, Mercury, The Feds, Home and Away and Hey Dad.

IMAGE 1With Set and Costume design by Bruce McKinven, Lighting by Trent Suidgeest and Sound by Ben Collins, while it may not be your normal cup of tea, however from all accounts Western Australians are in for an exhilarating ride.

Carolyn McDowall, The Culture Concept Circle, 2015

Black Swan State Theatre Company
Next to Normal

Heath Leger Theatre

7 – 22 November 2015

Music by Tom Kitt
Book & Lyrics by Brian Yorkey









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