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Previewed 16 November 2010, Opened 22 November 2010, Closed 21 May 2011 at the Trafalgar Studios
Peter Quilter's new play with songs End of The Rainbow in London starring Tracie Bennett as 'Judy Garland'.
It's December 1968 and Judy Garland is about to make her comeback... again. End of The Rainbow is set in a London hotel suite where, with her young new fiancÚ at her side, Judy Garland battles with a tornado of drugs and alcohol as she undertakes an exhausting series of concerts at the Talk of the Town nightspot in Leicester Square to try and reclaim her crown as the greatest talent of her generation. Despite a series of failed marriages and a wrecked Hollywood career, Judy remains a tough, compelling, remarkable woman always armed to the teeth with her legendary razor-sharp wit and Peter Quilter's End Of The Rainbow weaves the humour and heartbreak of the final months of Judy's life together in a savagely funny musical drama.
This production of End of The Rainbow in London stars Tracie Bennett as 'Judy Garland' and the play features several of Garland's classic songs, including The Man That Got Away; Come Rain or Come Shine; The Trolley Song; and Somewhere Over the Rainbow, with a live onstage band. This production transfers to London's West End following a run at the Royal and Derngate Theatre in Northampton from 5 to 20 February 2010.
Peter Quilter's new play End of The Rainbow in London along with Hilton McRae as 'Anthony', Stephen Hagan as 'Mickey Deans', Robin Browne and a live onstage band. The production is directed by Terry Johnson with designs by William Dudley, sound by Gareth Owen and lighting by Simon Corder.
"End Of The Rainbow charts the final few weeks of Judy Garland's life. Hers is the same old sad story of the gifted child superstar wrecked by the pressures of celebrity - the loneliness, the uppers, downers, alcohol, adrenaline and ovations - an escalating spiral of too much never being enough... Peter Quilter's play is neither searching nor original, but it is rescued from predictability by Garland's songs and her wisecracks: at her sharpest, she's a foul-mouthed junior Joan Rivers... The pot of pure gold, however, at the end of this particular rainbow is Tracie Bennett's phenomenal performance... The play goes no further than suggesting Judy was her own worst enemy, but a bravura Bennett captures the glorious troubled spirit and sound of Garland with breathtaking brilliance." The Mail on Sunday
"Peter Quilter's play is trapped in circular conversations - as horrible and tedious as, well, being locked in a hotel room with an addict. His familiar, maudlin material is in thrall to the diva's torment. It's a pretext for Tracie Bennett's barnstorming heroine. She occasionally seems more Elsie Tanner than Hollywood icon; but, singing with Garland's foggy twang, she hauls furious performances out of her guts. A vision of terrifying vivacity, careering over the edge." The Sunday Times
End of The Rainbow in London at the Trafalgar Studio 1 previewed from 16 November 2010, opened on 22 November 2010 and closes on 21 May 2011.