Book by Betty Comden and Adolph Green
Lyrics by Arthur Freed, and music by Nacio Herb Brown.
at the Epsom Playhouse
Director - Lisa Scott
Music Director - Dennis Hooker
Choreographer - Aimee Clarke-Hooker
|Don Lockwood||Paul Nicholas Dyke|
|Kathy Seldon||Charlie Qureshi|
|Cosmo Brown||Steve Watkins|
|Lina Lamont||Rebeca Cenamor|
|R.F. Simpson||Dilip Patel|
|Roscoe Dexter||Len Martin|
|Production Singer/J Cumberland Spendrill III/Villian/Ensemble||Russell Thompson|
|Dora Bailey/Ensemble||Sandra Zeffman|
|Male Diction Coach/Ensemble||Charlie Blencowe|
|Miss Dinsmore/Olga Mara/Ensemble||Julie Parker|
|Zelda Zanders/Ensemble||Olivia Jane Parker|
|Sid Phillips/Tramp/Sam (Butler)/Ensemble||Steve Leitch|
|First Assistant Director/Ensemble||Max Marchesi|
|Second Assistant Director/Ensemble||Anthony Black|
|Third Assistant Director/Ensemble||Sarah Farley|
|Lady In Waiting||Charlotte Thompson|
|Young Don||Oliver Furze|
|Young Cosmo||Robin Ward|
|Burlesque Dancer||Claire Newton|
|Mary Margaret/Ensemble||Helen Ash|
|Mary Margaret's Husband/Ensemble||John Hayman-Joyce|
|Wardrobe Mistress||Melanie Beggs|
|Mrs R F Simpson/Ensemble||Louise Laithwaite|
|Charlie Chaplin/Ensemble||Simon Ferrier|
|Coconut Grove Dancers||
1952 movie musical Singin' in the Rain ranked as the fifth greatest motion picture of all time in 2007, and has been popular on stage ever since the first theatre production at the London Palladium in 1983. It is set in the waning days of the silent screen era as they give way to new -fangled 'talkies'. It's 1927 and Hollywood is busy churning out dozens of silent movies when the premier of The Jazz Singer takes place. It is the first feature length motion picture with synchronised sound, and its overnight success heralds the decline of silent movies. The studios are forced to suddenly change all the movie-making rules at once, to accommodate sound.
It's 1927 and it is the opening night of Don Lockwood and Lina Lamont's new silent movie, which is being premiered at the Graumann's Chinese Theatre. Gossip columnist Dora Bailey interviews Don Lockwood who provides an account of his early life. Afterwards we learn why Don would not let his leading lady make a speech - Lina has the voice of a strangled frog! She also wants to make the publicity department's trumped up romance between the two of them a reality.
Cosmo Brown, Don's friend and ex dancing partner, takes Lina to the studio party, allowing Don to go for a walk. He is spotted by some fans and he pretends to be with a girl who is sitting on a bench. The girl, Kathy Selden, is at first outraged. Then, when she realises who she is with, unimpressed by the screen idol explaining that she wants to be a "serious" actress on the stage. Don, however, is very taken with Kathy. Don continues on to the studio party where the boss of Monumental Pictures, R.F. Simpson, gives a demonstration of the new talking pictures. A huge cake is wheeled on and out pops Kathy who, much to her embarrassment, comes face to face with Don. He makes fun of the fact that, having claimed to be a "serious " actress, she is working as a dancer. Kathy throws a cake at him, misses and hits Lina.
On stage at Monumental Pictures, Don is getting ready to shoot his new movie The Duelling Cavalier. He is concerned about Kathy, who has lost her job because of pie-gate, so Cosmo tries to cheer him up. The movie's director, Roscoe Dexter, arrives to begin shooting the love scene between Don and Lina but it turns into an argument when Lina announces that she got Kathy fired. R.F. then suspends filming as he decides it has to be re-shot as a talkie. Meanwhile Kathy gets a job in Monumental's first musical and is spotted in the chorus. Kathy is put under contract - on condition that the news is kept from Lina. Don declares his love for Kathy on a deserted sound stage making use of stage effects to create the right romantic mood.
Preparing for their first talkie, Don and Lina have elocution lessons. Lina's is going badly but Don is doing well, although Cosmo arrives to mock. Filming of The Duelling Cavalier hits problems as the sound men desperately try to find a place for the microphone. "It's in the bush", Roscoe tells Lina - again and again- but she is hopeless. The preview of the movie is a disaster; the dialogue and Lina's voice are terrible. The audience is appalled and the studio faces ruin if the film's problems cannot be fixed. At home, Don is depressed, until Kathy and Cosmo come up with the proposal to remake the picture as a musical with Kathy miming for Lina. The trio celebrate this brilliant idea. Don takes Kathy home in his limousine. They kiss in the rain at her door and Don walks home "Singin' in the rain"!
Kathy records Lina's singing and dialogue in secret but Lina finds out from her friend and bursts in to catch Don and Kathy. Furious, Lina threatens revenge. The opening of the renamed Dancing Cavalier is a success. Lina insists that Kathy be kept only as her voice and given no career of her own. Even R.F. has had enough and when Lina insists on making a speech, he doesn't try to stop her. The audience is shocked to hear her real voice and they demand a song. Kathy sings behind a curtain while Lina mimes a reprise of the show's hit song. Don and Cosmo raise the curtain to reveal Kathy singing. The audience is hysterical and Lina is humiliated. Kathy runs from the stage and Don asks the audience to stop her. She is now the real star - not Lina. Kathy's career is now assured and she and Don embrace.