Ghost the Musical

Previewed 22 June 2011, opened 19 July 2011, closed 6 October 2012 at the Piccadilly Theatre in London

A major new musical stage version of Ghost in London, based on the hugely popular 1990 film Ghost

Walking back to their apartment one night, Sam and Molly are mugged, leaving Sam murdered on a dark street. Sam is trapped as a ghost between this world and the next and unable to leave Molly who he learns is in grave danger. With the help of a phony store front psychic, Oda Mae Brown, Sam tries to communicate with Molly in the hope of saving and protecting her.

Musical with music and lyrics by Dave Stewart and Glen Ballard, and book by Bruce Joel Rubin, based on his screen play for the 1990 movie Ghost.

The original cast featured Richard Fleeshman as 'Sam Wheat', Caissie Levy as 'Molly Jensen', Sharon D Clarke as 'Oda Mae Brown', Adebayo Bolaji as 'Subway Ghost', Andrew Langtree as 'Carl Bruner', Ivan de Freitas as 'Willie Lopez', Jenny Fitzpatrick as 'Louise', Lisa Davina Phillip as 'Clara', Mark White as as 'Hospital Ghost', Darren Carnall, Emily Hawgood, Jaygann Ayeh, Jez Unwin, Laura Selwood, Louise Lawson, Mark Willshire, Michael Peters, Paul Ayres, Phillipa Stefani, Rebecca Giacopazzi, Rochelle Neil, Sally Whitehead, Samuel Edwards, Spencer Stafford, and Yemie Sonuga.

Directed by Matthew Warchus, with choreography by Ashley Wallen, designs by Rob Howell, projections by Jon Driscoll, illusions by Paul Kieve, lighting by Hugh Vanstone, and sound by Bobby Aitken.

The role of 'Sam Wheat' was played by Richard Fleeshman from Wednesday 22 June 2011 to Thursday 12 January 2012; and Mark Evans from Friday 13 January 2012 to Saturday 6 October 2012.

The role of 'Molly Jensen' was played by Caissie Levy from Wednesday 22 June 2011 to Thursday 12 January 2012; and Siobhan Dillon from Friday 13 January 2012 to Saturday 6 October 2012.

The role of 'Oda Mae Brown' was played by Sharon D Clarke for the entire run.

Prior to London's West End this production was presented at the Manchester Opera House Theatre from Monday 28 March 2011 through to Saturday 14 May 2011, with the same cast expect for Mark Pearce as 'Hospital Ghost', and Scott Ellis who was replaced by Samuel Edwards in the ensemble for London.

Ghost the Musical in London features new music and lyrics by Dave Stewart (of the Eurythmics) and Glen Ballard (writer of Michael Jackson's 'Man In The Mirror') and is based on the motion picture written by Bruce Joel Rubin and directed by Jerry Zucker, which starred Patrick Swayze as 'Sam Wheat' and Demi Moore as 'Molly Jensen', along with Whoopi Goldberg as 'Oda Mae Brown'. The film won two Oscars, for Whoopi Goldberg for 'Best Actress in a Supporting Role', and Bruce Joel Rubin for 'Best Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen'.

"As a film it struck me as a genuine, if guilty, pleasure. Good triumphs over evil when the ghost of the murdered Sam finally leaves Molly alone to take up his rightful place in Heaven. But it all comes down to chemistry and charm.... In this ultra-brash stage version, I'm afraid we get two leads with the combined charisma of a packet of cheesy Wotsits... It's not really the actors' fault. The songs by Dave Stewart and Glen Ballard are unmemorable, and Bruce Joel Rubin's book slavishly follows the film, hoping the cash register will again open up with a gratifying ker-ching. But the thundering rock score with its all-purpose disco choreography and a chorus of the undead doesn't ever find a new way of telling the story for the stage...Really, the appeal lies in Matthew Warchus's super-slick production and Paul Kieve's illusions, which use the latest technology to zoom bodies through solid doors, create thundering ghost trains and heavenly ascensions, and a plethora of other amazing special effects. These set a new industry standard and should win awards. But as musicals go, it all feels expensively pointless and top-heavy." The Mail on Sunday

"I've never quite been able to sit through Bruce Joel Rubin's tale about a good banker whose spirit hangs around - after he rather carelessly dies - in order to save his beloved from a bad banker. To say, therefore, that I was pleasantly surprised by Matthew Warchus's production, with music and lyrics by Dave Stewart and Glen Ballard, is an understatement. For a moment, about five minutes in, I thought I was really going to like it... Cut to nearly two-and-a-half hours later. I'd had enough of the designer Rob Howell's cinematic backdrop of whirling New York skyscrapers; enough of ghostly close-ups of massive heads snogging, projected onto gauze curtains; and enough of the sub-Don Henley/ZZ Top songs, which are blasted out at such an oppressively amplified volume it's impossible to hear the words. However, one thing this production does reveal, when we're given some snippets of Rubin's original Oscar-winning film dialogue, is how genuinely moving crucial moments in the story are, and also how brilliantly funny... It's enough to persuade me to give the film another try. Question: how do you solve the staging problems of Ghost - The Musical? Do it as a film." The Sunday Telegraph

"The story of Ghost - a dead man has to warn his beloved she is in danger but can only do so via the agency of a quack psychic - is all about the power of belief. But about an hour into this screen-to-stage adaptation, I was having a crisis of faith... Director Matthew Warchus has a habit of rendering the live performers almost superfluous by making them trudge back and forth in choreographed sync while the show's state-of-the-art cityscape visuals flash and dazzle behind. Then, just before the interval, Sam becomes impressively enraged at the thought of the years that have been unjustly snatched from him, and the characters - even the dead ones - spark into life as the musical numbers grow in complexity and intensity. From this point on, the story's big and difficult emotions finally take centre stage... No less impressive is the way Bruce Joel Rubin's adaptation takes on the film's more awkward legacies: both Unchained Melody and the much-parodied potter's wheel scene are inventively dealt." The London Metro

Ghost the Musical in London at the Piccadilly Theatre previewed from 22 June 2011, opened on 19 July 2011, and closed on 6 October 2012