Into the Hoods to Return to London for Christmas Season

News   Into the Hoods to Return to London for Christmas Season Into the Hoods, seen on the Edinburgh Fringe in 2006 and 2007 and subsequently at the West End's Novello Theatre in a season that ran March-August 2008, will return to London for the holiday season.

The production will play the Southbank Centre's Queen Elizabeth Hall, beginning performances Dec. 16, for a run through Jan. 10, 2010. The run is being presented by Southbank Centre and Phil McIntyre Entertainment.

The show, created by Kate Prince and her critically acclaimed street dance company ZooNation, employs their trademark narrative street dance/theatre style to put an energetic spin on the storyline (but not the score) to Sondheim and Lapine's Into the Woods. Prince was nominated for the 2009 Olivier Award for Best Theatre Choreographer for her work on the show. She has also choreographed a range of television shows (including BBC's "Strictly Dance Fever"), stage shows and music videos and when not performing in ZooNation, the cast of professional dancers perform internationally with artists such as Kylie, Nelly Furtado, Pink, Black Eyed Peas, 50 Cent, Beyonce and Snoop Dogg.

Featuring music from Stevie Wonder, Dizzee Rascal, Massive Attack, The Chemical Brothers, Kanye West and Prince, Into the Hoods tells the story of two runaway kids and their adventures in the ominous Ruff Endz estate. With characters like singer Lil Red, two-timing rapper Prince, Rap-en-Zel and gold trainer-wearing Spinderella, Into the Hoods resonates, according to press materials, "with contemporary cultural references and bridges the gap between street and stage."

ZooNation has also created the youth dance training school Zoo-Youth, who, in collaboration with Southbank Centre's Learning and Participation team, will deliver a free program of events and workshops alongside the show. In the run up to Into the Hoods, Prince will be working closely with Southbank Centre, beginning with Dance Mob, a one-minute dance routine choreographed by Kate, which will be performed by hundreds of members of the public in the outdoors spaces around the Royal Festival Hall on Aug. 30. Aspiring participants can learn the routine online at www.southbankcentre.co.uk/dancemob beginning July 14 or at any of the summer dance workshops or on the day from 11 AM.

In a press statement, Prince said, "The atmosphere at Southbank Centre is simply awesome. I've wanted ZooNation to perform at Southbank Centre for sometime and I'm delighted to be working with them on both Dance Mob and Into The Hoods." Southbank Centre Artistic Director Jude Kelly added, "Street dance is currently gripping the nation and deservedly so. Southbank Centre has a long tradition of providing this burgeoning art form with a platform, so we are thrilled to welcome ZooNation's urban take on a classic fairytale here, as one of the highlights of this year's Christmas program."

To book tickets, contact the box office at 0871 663 2500 or visit www.southbankcentre.co.uk.

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