Everything you need to know about 'Moulin Rouge! The Musical' in London

Dom Simpson and Tanisha Spring play Christian and Satine in Moulin Rouge! The Musical in the West End. Read our guide to learn more about this spectacular show.

Sophie Thomas
Sophie Thomas

When someone says the words "Moulin Rouge", what do you think of first? We tend to think of the lascivious, nighttime behaviour mixed with the lavishness and luxuriousness of a sizzling nightclub. If you've watched the film and even been to visit the Moulin Rouge in Paris, you'll love Moulin Rouge! The Musical at the Piccadilly Theatre.

Baz Luhrmann's award-winning film is definitely at the heart of this production, matched with a contemporary pop score with tracks by Madonna, P!nk, and Elton John. Ahead of stepping into this hedonistic dreamer's paradise, read all about how Moulin Rouge! The Musical in London.

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What is Moulin Rouge! The Musical about?

Set in the Montmartre Quarter in Paris, audiences are welcomed to the Moulin Rouge from their first step in the auditorium. It's bold. It's daring. It's indulgent. Then, as the curtain rises, a lovesick writer named Christian takes his seat inside the Moulin Rouge, looking forward to the evening's events. He's greeted by Satine, the "sparkling diamond" star of the show.

Clearly, there's a twinkle in both of their eyes, as they're besotted by each other from first glance. While at the Moulin Rouge, audiences also meet Harold Zidler, the larger-than-life host, as well as wealthy Duke of Monroth who tries to buy romantic passion. But, even if the course of love doesn't run smooth, Christian and Satine do all it takes to stay together.

When did Moulin Rouge! The Musical premiere?

The world premiere of Moulin Rouge! The Musical took place at Boston's Emerson Colonial Theatre. Performances began on 27 June 2018, ahead of an opening night on 22 July 2018. The first run was limited, with performances to 19 August 2018.

After Boston performances, Moulin Rouge! The Musical made its Broadway premiere at the Al Hirschfeld Theatre. Previews began nearly exactly a year later, starting on 28 June 2019 ahead of an opening night on 25 July 2019.

Moulin Rouge! The Musical premiered in London at the Piccadilly Theatre on 12 November 2021.

Who wrote Moulin Rouge! The Musical?

The book of the stage musical is written by John Logan, with a score by a host of pop stars. Moulin Rouge! The Musical is based on the 2001 musical film of the same name written by Baz Luhrmann and Craig Pearce. An Australian screenwriter and director, notable works include Strictly Ballroom, The Great Gatsby and Romeo & Juliet.

Who is in Moulin Rouge! The Musical in London?

Dom Simpson plays Christian, with Tanisha Spring as Satine. Matt Rixon plays Harold Zidler, joined by Ivan De Freitas as Santiago, Ben Richards as the Duke, Ian Carlyle as Toulouse-Lautrec, Charlotte Gooch as Nini, Anthony Cragg as Baby Doll, Hannah Jay-Allan as Arabia, Bernadette Bangura as La Chocolat. Angela Marie Hurst serves as alternate Satine.

Oliver Adam-Reynolds, Erin Bell, Emily Bolland, Ross Chisari, James Chisholm, Katie Deacon, Fletcher Dobinson, Serenar Douch, Rola Elliott, Davide Fienauri, Zack Guest, Natorii Illidge, David King-Yombo, Jasmine Leung, Kira McPherson, Melissa Nettleford, Chris Otim, Joshua Robinson, Callum Rose, Ben Rutter, Gavin Ryan, Craig Ryder, Jamie Shields, Catrin Thomas, Matt Trevorrow, Charley Warburton, Sasha Woodward, and Luke Fraser Yates complete the Moulin Rouge! The Musical cast.

What theatre in London is Moulin Rouge! The Musical playing at?

Moulin Rouge! The Musical is at the Piccadilly Theatre, and took over from Pretty Woman: The Musical which opened in February 2020. Previous shows at the Piccadilly Theatre include West End transfers of Death of a Salesman and The Lehman Trilogy.

What is the running time of Moulin Rouge! The Musical?

The running time for Moulin Rouge! The Musical in London is 2 hours and 35 minutes, including one 20-minute interval. Matinee performances begin at 2:30pm and evening performances begin at 7:30pm.

What are the songs in Moulin Rouge! The Musical?

The Moulin Rouge! The Musical msuic is made up of 70 separate songs, with musical medleys and mashups performed throughout the show. There's also stand-out songs from the 2001 film, including "Come What May" sung by Christian and Satine and "Lady Marmalade." But, to rejuvenate the story, theatre are pop songs, including Sia's "Chandelier" and Katy Perry's "Firework." Check out more about pop songs in Moulin Rouge! The Musical.

Act 1

"Welcome to the Moulin Rouge! (Lady Marmalade/So Fresh, So Clean/Money (That's What I Want)/Let's Dance/Burning Down The House/Because We Can (Fatboy Slim)" - Zidler, Nini, La Chocolat, Arabia, Baby Doll, Monroth, Christian, Toulouse-Lautrec, Santiago, and Company

"Bohemian Ideas (The Sound of Music/I Don't Want To Wait/Every Breath You Take/Never Gonna Give You Up)" - Christian

"Truth, Beauty, Freedom, Love (Royals/Children of the Revolution/We Are Young)" - Christian, Toulouse-Lautrec, Santiago, and Company

"The Sparkling Diamond (Diamonds Are Forever/Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend/Material Girl/Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)/Diamonds)" - Satine and Company

"Shut Up and Raise Your Glass (Shut Up And Dance/Raise Your Glass/I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me))" - Satine, Christian, Toulouse, Santiago, and Company

"Firework" - Satine

"Your Song" - Christian and Satine

"So Exciting! (The Pitch Song) (Milord/La Vie en rose/Habanera (L'amour est un oiseau rebelle)/Galop Infernal)"- Zidler, Toulouse-Lautrec, Christian, Santiago, Satine, and Monroth

"Sympathy For The Duke (Sympathy For The Devil/You Can't Always Get What You Want/Gimme Shelter)" - Monroth, Satine, and Company

"Nature Boy" - Toulouse-Lautrec and Christian

"Elephant Love Medley (All You Need is Love/Love is Just a Game/I Was Made for Loving You/Just One Night/Pride (In the Name of Love)/Can't Help Falling In Love/Don't You Want Me/Don't Speak/I Love You Always Forever/It Ain't Me Babe/Love Hurts/Love is a Battlefield/Play the Game/Such Great Heights/Torn/Take On Me/Fidelity/What's Love Got To Do with It/Everlasting Love/Up Where We Belong/Heroes/Your Song/I Will Always Love You)" - Christian, Satine, and Company

Act 2

"Backstage Romance (Bad Romance/Tainted Love/Seven Nation Army/Toxic/Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)" - Santiago, Nini, and Company

"Come What May" - Christian and Satine

"Only Girl In A Material World (Only Girl (In the World)/Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend/Material Girl)" - Monroth, Satine, and Company

"Chandelier" - Zidler, Christian, Santiago, Toulouse-Lautrec, La Chocolat, Arabia, Baby Doll, and Company

"El Tango de Roxanne (Roxanne/es:Tanguera)" - Christian and Company

"Crazy Rolling (Crazy/Rolling in the Deep)" - Christian, Satine, and Company

"Your Song (Reprise) (Come What May/Your Song/Heroes)" - Satine, Christian, and Company

"Come What May (Reprise)" - Christian and Company

"More More More! (Lady Marmalade/Hey Ya!/Because We Can (Fatboy Slim)/Minnie the Moocher/Bad Romance/What's Love Got to Do with It/Don't You Want Me/Crazy/Galop Infernal)" - Zidler and Company

What awards has Moulin Rouge! The Musical won?

Moulin Rouge! The Musical is a multi-award-winning musical. Here's a list of all the Tony and Olivier-nominated categories for Moulin Rouge! The Musical.

Tony Awards

Best Musical
Best Direction of a Musical - Alex Timbers
Best Choreography - Sonya Tayeh
Best Orchestrations - Justin Levine with Matt Stine, Katie Kresek and Charlie Rosen
Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical - Aaron Tveit
Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Musical - Danny Burstein
Best Scenic Design in a Musical - Derek McLane
Best Costume Design in a Musical - Catherine Zuber
Best Lighting Design in a Musical - Justin Townsend
Best Sound Design of a Musical - Peter Hylenski

Olivier Awards

Best Costume Design - Catherine Zuber

What are some fun facts about Moulin Rouge! The Musical?

  • The song "Come What May" was never going to be in the movie. "Come What May" was originally penned for Luhrmann's Romeo & Juliet.
  • The actual Moulin Rouge was home to a large elephant, patrons could pay 1 franc to view an intimate belly show.
  • The dance styles in Moulin Rouge! The Musical are inspired by actual routines performed at the Parisian cabaret venue. Moulin Rouge's cancan is the Guinness Book of World Records. To celebrate the cabaret's 125th anniversary in 2014, the dancers of Moulin Rouge did 29 consecutive kicks in 30 seconds.

How do I get tickets for Moulin Rouge! The Musical?

Moulin Rouge! The Musical is an extremely popular musical in London. You'll want to book your tickets now. Imagine you're at the Parisian cabaret!

Book Moulin Rouge! The Musical tickets in London.

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Photo credit: Dom Simpson and Tanisha Spring in Moulin Rouge! The Musical (Photo courtesy of production)

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