Sarah Brightman shone as Christine in Andrew Lloyd Webber's The Phantom of the Opera in the West End and on Broadway.
Now, the world's best-selling soprano will hit Australian stages in 2024 to star as Norma Desmond in another Webber musical masterpiece, Sunset Boulevard, which is based on the Billy Wilder film of the same name.
It weaves a magnificent tale of faded glory and unfulfilled ambition. Having been discarded by Hollywood with the advent of "talkies", legendary silent movie star, Norma Desmond, is tortured by her longing for a return to the big screen. When she meets struggling Hollywood screenwriter Joe Gillis in a dramatic chance encounter, their subsequent passionate and volatile relationship leads to an unforeseen and tragic conclusion.
The thrillingly atmospheric score features the hits With One Look, The Perfect Year, and the anthemic As If We Never Said Goodbye.
The musical version of Sunset Boulevard had its world premiere at London's Adelphi Theatre in July 1993, and later opened on Broadway at the Minskoff Theatre in November 1994. The original Broadway production won six Tony Awards of the eleven Tony Awards for which it was nominated including Best Musical, Best Original Score and Best Book.
In this production - presented by GWB Entertainment and Opera Australia by arrangement with The Really Useful Group - spectacular new staging features stunning sets and costumes, evoking the glamorous Golden Age of Hollywood.
This newly imagined revival of the show will mark its first return to Australia in almost 20 years, when it played to sold out audiences. The search is on for an Australian cast to join Sarah, who will be embarking on her first theatrical role in three decades.
"I am so delighted to be returning to Australia after many years, and to be marking my return to the stage in a musical after so long, it is only fitting for it to be with such an exquisite production as Sunset Boulevard," she said.
"I have always admired Andrew's work on this musical and I very much look forward to exploring the incredible score and also the iconic character of Norma Desmond. Mr. DeMille, I'm Ready for My Close Up!"
Sunset Boulevard will premiere in Melbourne on May 21, 2024, at the Princess Theatre followed by a season at the Sydney Opera House in August.
Tickets for the Melbourne shows are on sale now, while a waitlist for the Sydney is taking names.
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