Andrew Lloyd Webber's Love Never Dies, the sequel to his hit musical The Phantom of the Opera, may make its American debut at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, according to an interview with the famed composer in The Washington Post.
Love Never Dies has a score by Lloyd Webber and lyrics by Tony nominee Glenn Slater (Sister Act, The Little Mermaid, Leap of Faith). The book is by Lloyd Webber, Ben Elton and Slater. Phantom lyricist Charles Hart is also credited with additional lyrics.
Following a 2010 London premiere, which was not critically embraced, Lloyd Webber enlisted director Simon Phillips and a new Australian creative team to stage a fresh production of the lavish musical, which traces the relationship of the Phantom and soprano Christine from Paris to Coney Island. It premiered in Melbourne in 2011.
The Australian version, which has since toured the U.K. and played Tokyo and Denmark, was also restaged for German audiences in Hamburg.
Scenic-costume designer Gabriela Tylesova gave the production a darker, more brooding approach. The Australian staging also incorporated revisions to the script and score that were first implemented in London while the original production was still running.
“The Australian production sort of got it,” Lloyd Webber told the Washington paper, “and that’s the one that’s just been in Hamburg, and I’ve also done some revisions to it that have been tried out in Hamburg. And that is the production that comes to America. But I can’t do any more to it; I’ve done what I feel I can to it, and I think one has to say: ’That’s it. That’s the piece.’”
The composer, whose international hit Cats returns to Broadway this summer, also said the recent English National Opera staging of Sunset Boulevard, starring Tony winner Glenn Close, may find its way to New York, and NBC has asked him to compose an original musical that would be broadcast live. No details on either project have been announced.
The Tony and Olivier winner also opened up about his previous health problems, including a severe back condition and treatment for prostate cancer, explaining, “I've had effectively four missing years with the cancer and the back pain.”
Lloyd Webber's newest musical, School of Rock, plays Broadway's Winter Garden Theatre and is nominated for four Tony Awards, including Best Musical and Best Original Score (Lloyd Webber and Slater).