Musical (1984)

Musique: Andrew Lloyd Webber
Paroles: Don Black • Richard Stilgoe
Production à la création:

Dans la chambre d'un enfant, plusieurs locomotives font la course, accompagnés de leurs wagons préférés.
qui gagnera ? Greaseball, la locomotive diesel? Electra, la locomotive électrique? Quand même pas Rusty, la locomotive à vapeur ? Rusty reçoit alors l'aide du mysterieux Starlight Express. Avec son aide, Rusty réussira peut-être à gagner la course et le coeur de la belle Pearl. Comme dit Poppa, il y a toujours une lumière au fond du tunnel.

Starlight Express" sera, malgré ses qualités scéniques et son énorme succès à Londres (7406 représ), un échec artistique, Andrew Lloyd Webber ayant composé pour cette œuvre une vingtaine de titres supposés devenir des tubes pop, et n'ayant réussi à ne placer aucun titre dans les hit parades.
Une version allemande se joue depuis vingt ans à Bodrum.

Aucun dossier informatif complémentaire concernant Starlight Express

Version 1

Starlight Express (1984-03-Apollo Victoria Theatre-London)

Type de série: Original
Théâtre: Apollo Victoria Theatre (Londres - Angleterre)
Durée : 17 ans 9 mois 3 semaines
Nombre : 7406 représentations
Première Preview : mardi 27 mars 1984
Première : mardi 27 mars 1984
Dernière : samedi 12 janvier 2002
Mise en scène : Trevor Nunn
Chorégraphie : Arlene Phillips
Producteur :
Avec : Jeff Shankley (Greaseball), Chrissy Wickham (Ashley), Nancy Wood (Buffy), Frances Ruffelle (Dina), Stephanie Lawrence (Pearl), Michael Staniforth (C.B.), Lon Satton (Poppa), Jeffrey Daniel (Electra), Ray Shell (Rusty)
Commentaires : The performers were required to race around the theatre on roller-skates. They underwent several months of skating training to be able to take part and the theatre itself had to undergo major alterations to accommodate racing tracks running through the auditorium, up to the circle, then back down through the stalls. The show went on to become one of the major hits of all time, with world-wide productions.

Version 2

Starlight Express (1987-03-George Gershwin Theatre-Broadway)

Type de série: Original Broadway
Théâtre: Gershwin Theatre (Broadway - Etats-Unis)
Durée : 1 an 10 mois
Nombre : 22 previews - 761 représentations
Première Preview : mardi 24 février 1987
Première : dimanche 15 mars 1987
Dernière : dimanche 08 janvier 1989
Mise en scène : Trevor Nunn
Chorégraphie : Arlene Phillips
Producteur :
Commentaires longs: This version featured extensive revisions to the plot and the addition and omission of several musical numbers. "C.B." at this point lost his name and was henceforth known only as "Red Caboose," and rather than racing simply for the accolade "Champion Engine of the World", the trains raced for a prize, the "Silver Dollar".

The race structure changed from three heats with one winner each in the final, to two heats with two winners each in the final. Rusty didn't race in the heats at all, making Belle (Memphis Belle, as she was re-named) redundant. This made the show considerably shorter and less complex, as there was now one race fewer and no debate over whether or not Rusty should be allowed to race in the final. It also lead to Belle being entirely cut from the show in later productions, as she served no useful purpose. The engines now raced for a prize, the Silver Dollar, rather than just for the sake of winning.

The "Entry of National Engines" was moved to the beginning of the show, in the place of the overture. The song "Engine of Love" was used when Rusty brought the Coaches in near the beginning of the show. Pearl then went off with him before "A Lotta Locomotion", so that it was sung only by Dinah, Buffy and Ashley. "He Whistled at Me" was replaced with the more sedate ballad "Make Up My Heart." "AC/DC" no longer came to a conclusion, but was interrupted by Greaseball with "Pumping Iron", now a direct challenge to the newcomer. Because Electra had already entered with his entourage, the second and third class Sleepers no longer existed. Joule, Volta and Wrench now joined "Pumping Iron" in their places. "There's Me" became a duet between Caboose and Dinah.

"The Rap" was completely re-written as the original, mainly concerning Rusty's predicament, was irrelevant. For the "Downhill Final", Rusty appeared in a new costume as the Starlight Express. None of the other characters recognised him. After the race, Caboose stole the Silver Dollar. The company accuse Rusty of having stolen it, and he consents to being searched if the opposition have to do likewise. This led to a lengthy slapstick chase ("The Chase"), at the conclusion of which was Caboose crashing into Greaseball and Electra. "No Comeback" was cut. The disguised Rusty idea was scrapped during the Broadway run and reverted back to Rusty entering the Final as himself, and "The Chase" being cut completely. Greaseball, Caboose, & Electra then sang "One Rock 'n' Roll Too Many", rearranged with choreography that was more slapstick and less sexual innuendo laden. Pearl sang a brief reprise of "Make Up My Heart" ('It's thanks to you that things worked out all right. I knew it from the start. Now I know I've made up my heart.'), however it was cut early in the preview period. "Only He" was replaced with an expanded "Only You", and the show ended with "Light at the end of the Tunnel."

Version 3

Starlight Express (1987-11-Japan & Australian Tour)

Type de série:
Théâtre: Australian Tour ( - Australie)
Durée : 6 mois 2 semaines
Nombre :
Première Preview : dimanche 15 novembre 1987
Première : dimanche 15 novembre 1987
Dernière : dimanche 29 mai 1988
Mise en scène :
Chorégraphie :
Producteur :
Commentaires longs: Tokyo: 15 November - 11 December 1987
Osaka: 24 December 1987 - 10 January 1988
Sydney: 24 January - 28 February 1988
Brisbane: 6–20 March 1988
Melbourne: 27 March - 14 April 1988 (Rod Laver Arena)
Adelaide: 21 April - 8 May 1988
Perth: 18–29 May 1988

Version 4

Starlight Express (1988-06-Starlighthalle-Bochum)

Type de série: Revival
Théâtre: Starlight Express Theater (Bochum - Allemagne)
Durée : 32 ans 10 mois
Nombre :
Première Preview : dimanche 12 juin 1988
Première : dimanche 12 juin 1988
Dernière : Open end, ouvert actuellement jusqu'au mer. 31 mars 2021
Mise en scène : Trevor Nunn
Chorégraphie : Arlene Phillips
Producteur :
Commentaires : The Starlighthalle was built especially for the production in an extraordinary time of less than one year. Both the special building and record breaking build time were documented in the Guinness Book of Records. The Starlighthalle was specially designed for the show, with large tracks on two levels in a U-like shape with the audience sitting in the middle and around these tracks. On stage the tracks even run over three levels which allows several race combinations. In 2003 a 'Y' shaped track was added to the smallest inner track, the Parkett, dividing it into 3 seating areas and allowing greater flexibility of staging and more tricks for the skaters. A good impression of the Starlighthalle can be seen on the official website from a 360° panorama view and lots of high resolution pictures from the show, featuring the current cast.

Version 5

Starlight Express (1989-11-US Tour 1)

Type de série: US Tour
Théâtre: US Tour ( - Etats-Unis)
Durée : 1 an 5 mois 1 semaine
Nombre :
Première Preview : mercredi 01 novembre 1989
Première : mercredi 01 novembre 1989
Dernière : vendredi 12 avril 1991
Mise en scène :
Chorégraphie :
Producteur :
Commentaires longs: The first US Tour, a downscaled production directly descended from Broadway, ran in the U.S. and Canada from November 1989 - 12 April 1991. The set included a small loop of track into the audience, and the races were pre-recorded film mixed with live action.

Version 6

Starlight Express (1993-09-Hilton-Las Vegas)

Type de série: Revival
Théâtre: Hilton (Las Vegas - Etats-Unis)
Durée : 4 ans 2 mois 2 semaines
Nombre :
Première Preview : mardi 14 septembre 1993
Première : mardi 14 septembre 1993
Dernière : dimanche 30 novembre 1997
Mise en scène :
Chorégraphie :
Producteur :
Commentaires longs: The Las Vegas production opened on 14 September 1993 in an abridged, 90-minute production without an intermission at the Las Vegas Hilton, where it ran until 30 November 1997. This production was the first legitimate musical theatre permanent production in Las Vegas, and concessions were made in the form of the shortened runtime and betting references in the race sequences. Also partway through the run, the Coaches' costumes were given an unmistakable "Vegas Showgirl" makeover. The Hotel changed ownership in 1997 at which point the new owners decided to end the run before its 5 year contract concluded. The Las Vegas production also brought something to the show that no other production has ever included; the show was set on Christmas Eve. Control is playing with his trains in the opening, until his mother tells him that now that 'your stocking is hung up', he has to be asleep ready for the 'big day tomorrow, Christmas Day'.

Version 7

Starlight Express (2003-04-US Tour 2)

Type de série: US Tour
Théâtre: US Tour ( - Etats-Unis)
Durée : 1 an 2 mois 2 semaines
Nombre :
Première Preview : mardi 01 avril 2003
Première : mardi 01 avril 2003
Dernière : dimanche 13 juin 2004
Mise en scène :
Chorégraphie :
Producteur :
Commentaires longs: Following the closure of the London production, Starlight Express: The Third Dimension, a touring production opened in Biloxi, Mississippi. It was a downscaled and shortened version of the show, with further revisions to the material by American composer David Yazbek. Owing to the restrictions of touring theatres, digital video company Inition were commissioned to produce high-definition race footage in 3-D film to replace the live racing

Version 8

Starlight Express (2004-11-UK Tour)

Type de série: UK Tour
Théâtre: UK Tour ( - Angleterre)
Durée : 3 ans 4 mois 3 semaines
Nombre :
Première Preview : jeudi 04 novembre 2004
Première : jeudi 04 novembre 2004
Dernière : dimanche 30 mars 2008
Mise en scène :
Chorégraphie :
Producteur :
Commentaires longs: The UK Tour of Starlight Express opened on the 4 November 2004 in Manchester. Adapted from the second U.S. tour with some reversions to the "New" London production, including much of David Yazbek's contribution being removed after Andrew Lloyd Webber saw it performed on stage. In November 2007 the production toured Stockholm, Gothenburg, Oslo and Helsinki, using an expanded set designed for use in stadium venues. The last performance was on March 2008, in Plymouth.

The production advertised using the following slogans -

You'll Be Steaming If You Miss It
The Race Is On
Steaming back!

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