Ban and Pastor to Star in Zorro — the Musical at France's Folies Bergère; Renshaw Directs

News   Ban and Pastor to Star in Zorro — the Musical at France's Folies Bergère; Renshaw Directs
 
Initial casting has been announced for the French production of Zorro — the Musical — based on Isabel Allende's 2005 best-seller "Zorro: A Novel" — which will open at Paris' Folies Bergère Nov. 5.

Set in Spain and California, Zorro - the Musical goes back to the origins of the legend and tells how the young Don Diego becomes Zorro, the masked swordsman who fights against injustice.

The production will be directed by Christopher Renshaw (The King and I, We Will Rock You) and choreographed by Rafael Amargo.

The cast will be led by Laurent Ban in the title role with Liza Pastor as Luisa. Ban was recently seen in a revival of Hair. He has also been part of such French pop musicals as Notre Dame de Paris and Le Petit Prince (both for the Paris run and the Southeast Asian tour). Ban also dubbed the voice of The Phantom of The Opera in the French version of Joel Schumacher's film. Pastor was Ban's co-star in Hair earlier this year. Benoit de Gaulejac will be Garcia; other cast members will be announced shortly.

Zorro — the Musical received its world premiere in Woking, United Kingdom, March 13, 2008, prior to a West End opening at the Garrick Theatre on July 15 of the same year. In February 2009, the musical earned five Laurence Olivier Award nominations, with Lesli Margherita winning the award for Best Performance in a Supporting Role in a Musical. The London production closed March 14, 2009.

The musical includes some hits from The Gipsy Kings, including "Bamboleo" and "Djobi Djoba," but the internationally known French band also wrote some original music for the production. John Cameron provided additional music while Stephen Clark (Martin Guerre) wrote the book and the lyrics. Eric Taraud, whose recent work on the French version of Kander and Ebb's Cabaret has earned him critical acclaim, will provide the French adaptation of the book and the lyrics. The Paris production will also feature new songs.

For tickets call 33820 88 87 86 or visit www.zorro-lemusical.fr.

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Stéphane Ly-Cuong is a Paris based freelance writer and director.

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