Bend It Like Beckham, Musical Version of 2002 Film, to Open at West End's Phoenix Theatre

News   Bend It Like Beckham, Musical Version of 2002 Film, to Open at West End's Phoenix Theatre Bend It Like Beckham, a new British musical version of the 2002 film of the same name, is headed to the West End, where it will begin performances May 15, 2015, prior to an official opening June 24 at the Phoenix Theatre.

It will be directed by Gurinder Chadha, who also co-wrote and co-produced the original film. The musical will feature original music by Howard Goodall and lyrics by Charles Hart, with a new book by Paul Mayeda Berges and Chadha.

In Bend it Like Beckham, press notes state, "Jess needs extra time. She is facing the most important decision of her life; live up to family expectations of university, career and marriage, or follow in the footsteps of her hero David Beckham. When the talented teenage footballer is spotted playing football in Southall, a world of opportunities opens up before her. But as the day of her sister's traditional Indian wedding approaches, Jess needs to pick sides."

In a press statement, Chadha commented, "Developing Bend It Like Beckham for the stage has been the most enjoyable creative process of my career so far. It was always my intention to build on the film and to present its themes and storylines to live audiences in an exciting new dynamic way. I have been inspired by musicals ever since I was a little girl, now with Bend It like Beckham, such a familiar story to so many, I believe we are presenting a totally new kind of musical - part West End, part London Punjabi, but whole heartedly British. I am very excited for us to take our place with so many inspirational musicals past and present in my home town London."

The musical will feature choreography and musical staging by Aletta Collins, set design by Miriam Buether, costume design by Katrina Lindsay, lighting design by Neil Austin, sound design by Richard Brooker, musical direction by Nigel Lilley and orchestrations by Howard Goodall and Kuljit Bhamra. It is being produced by Sonia Friedman Productions.

The 2002 film, which starred Parminder Nagra, Keira Knightley, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Anupam Kher, Shaznay Lewis and Archie Panjabi, was written by Chadha, Guljit Bindra and Paul Mayeda Berges. It was produced by Deepak Nayar and Chadha. Chadha's other films include "Bhaji on the Beach," "What's Cooking," "Bride and Prejudice," "Paris, je t'aime," "Angus,Thongs and Perfect Snogging" and, most recently, "It's a Wonderful Afterlife," for all of which she co-wrote the screenplays. She also co-wrote screenplays for "The Mistress of Spices" and the forthcoming DreamWorks Animation picture "Monkeys of Mumbai."

Goodall's other stage musicals include The Hired Man, Girlfriends, Days of Hope, The Kissing-Dance, The Dreaming, A Winter’s Tale and Love Story. His film and TV scores include "The Vicar of Dibley," "Blackadder," "Mr. Bean" (TV series and films), "Q.I.," "The Gathering Storm," "Into the Storm" and "Red Dwarf."

Hart has written lyrics for Andrew Lloyd Webber's The Phantom of the Opera and Aspects of Love, and also contributed lyrics to Love Never Dies. His other musical credits include The Kissing-Dance and The Dreaming (both with Goodall).

To book tickets, which go on public sale Nov. 7, and are initially on sale through July 11 only, contact the box office on 0843 316 1082, or visit benditlikebeckhamthemusical.co.uk.

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