Full casting and creative team have been announced for WHISTLE DOWN THE WIND – the first major UK revival of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Jim Steinman’s 1996 rock musical since 2010 – which will play at The Watermill from Friday 22 July until Saturday 10 September.
Directed by Tom Jackson Greaves (Watermill Associate Artist, The Jungle Book, Amélie, Sweet Charity, Macbeth, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Borrowers, Twelfth Night, Romeo and Juliet, Frankenstein), WHISTLE DOWN THE WIND will feature a company of actor musicians alongside a cast of talented local young people.
America, 1959. Change is in the air. The post war boom is thriving, the civil rights movement is growing and the golden age of television has begun. But, on a farm in rural Louisiana three children are hoping for a miracle.
When Swallow, a teenager struggling to come to terms with the death of her mother, discovers a man hiding out in the family barn she becomes convinced he is Jesus. In a town where the community will do anything to defend their way of life, the children unite to protect their saviour. As fantasy and reality collide, Swallow begins to discover who she is and what it means to grow up.
Chrissie Bhima (LIFT – Southwark Playhouse) will play ‘Candy’, Lewis Cornay (John and Jen – Southwark Playhouse – Off West End Award for Leading Performance, The Book of Mormon – Prince Edward Theatre) as ‘Amos’, Lloyd Gorman (Once – UK Tour, Sunny Afternoon – Harold Pinter Theatre) as ‘Boone’, Charlotte Grayson (Songs for a New World – London Palladium) as ‘Ensemble’, Jerome Lincoln (For You, I’d Wait – Turbine Theatre & Union Theatre) as ‘Ed’, Elliot Mackenzie (Million Dollar Quartet – UK Tour, Aladdin – Queens Theatre Hornchurch) as ‘Snake Preacher/Minister/Show MD’, Emma Jane Morton (Just So – Watermill Theatre, Amélie – UK Tour & The Other Palace) as ‘Ensemble’, Alfie Richards (Parade – The Other Palace) as ‘Earl’, Robert Tripolino (Jesus Christ Superstar – Barbican, Rent – Sydney Opera House) as ‘The Man’, Toby Webster (Shakespeare in Love – Theatre Royal Bath, Oppenheimer – RSC West End) as ‘Sheriff’, Lydia White (Little Women – The Park Theatre, The Last Five Years – Garrick Theatre) as ‘Swallow’, Stephanie Elstob (Edward Scissorhands – Matthew Bourne New Adventures – Amadeus – Chichester Festival Theatre) as ‘Mother’.
Whistle Down the Wind has Tom Jackson Greaves as Director and Choreographer, Simon Kenny as Designer, Stuart Morley as Musical Supervisor and Arrangements, George Francis as Musical Director, Andrew Exeter as Lighting Designer, Yvonne Gilbert as Sound Designer, Nandi Bhebhe and Annie Southall as Assistant Directors, Rose Burston as DSM, Caitlin Ravenscroft and Natalie Toney as ASM, Chloe Robson as Placement ASM and Audio Description by Jenny Stewart-Cosgrove.
Tom Jackson Greaves says:
‘The opportunity to bring this incredible story back to the stage after its long absence feels extremely special. We have been given the chance to introduce it to audiences anew whilst also creating a brave and fresh interpretation for those who may have seen it before. It’s a real gift. Stories of dreams, grief, family and community have universal power and I hope our actor-musician-led revival will engage and surprise our audiences at the most beautiful theatre in the country – The Watermill.’