Tuesday, October 09, 2007

The 5th Avenue Presents the U.S. Premiere Tour of

Whistle Down The Wind

Andrew Lloyd Webber’s and Jim Steinman’s Powerful and Uplifting Musical

12 Local Kids to Be Cast: Seattle Children’s Audition on October 13

Performances: November 13 – December 2, 2007

SEATTLEThe 5th Avenue presents the U.S. premiere touring production of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s WHISTLE DOWN THE WIND, described by the London Daily Telegraph as “Andrew Lloyd Webber’s best show since The Phantom of the Opera.” Produced and directed by Bill Kenwright, the musical is based on the 1961 film starring Hayley Mills, and comes direct from a record-breaking West End engagement and U.K. sell-out tour. Seattle is the fifth stop of the U.S. national tour, which includes Houston , Hartford and Sacramento .

Twenty children are featured in this inspirational musical about the innocence of children and the transformative power of love. Eight young actors travel with the touring production, and 12 local kids will be cast for the three-week run at Seattle ’s 5th Avenue Theatre.

WHISTLE DOWN THE WIND is a fantastic story for a musical dramatist, and it took me back to my rock roots,” says composer Andrew Lloyd Webber. “It’s a primal tale about salvation and forgiveness that everyone can relate to. I’m absolutely delighted that Bill Kenwright’s wonderful production is going to be seen in America .”

“My time working on Whistle has been, alongside Blood Brothers and Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, the most exciting and rewarding of my career,” says director Bill Kenwright. “It is a show that has everything – great, great songs, exciting narrative, wonderful performances and one of the best and simplest storylines I have ever come across.”

Featuring a host of award-winning songs including the Boyzone smash hit “No Matter What,” WHISTLE DOWN THE WIND tells the story of a young Louisiana girl who finds a mysterious stranger hiding in her barn. When she asks his identity, the first words he utters are “Jesus Christ,” and it’s as if all her prayers have been answered. While the townspeople are determined to find the escaped felon, she and her friends vow to protect him from the outside world.

This new U.S. premiere production partners renowned rock lyricist Jim Steinman (Meatloaf’s classic album Bat Out of Hell, Bonnie Tyler’s “Total Eclipse of the Heart”) and award-winning composer Andrew Lloyd Webber (Jesus Christ Superstar, Cats, Evita, Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat) to create a melodic and haunting score that was inspired by the indigenous sounds of the American South – blues, gospel, country and rock ‘n’ roll. With a book by Patricia Knop, Gale Edwards and Andrew Lloyd Webber, WHISTLE DOWN THE WIND combines award-winning songs and epic storytelling for an extraordinary tale about the transformative power of love.

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