Musical The Grinning Man set for West End transfer in December

The Grinning Man

New British musical The Grinning Man is set to transfer to London at the end of this year.

With a book by Carl Grose, the musical is based on the novel The Man Who Laughs by Victor Hugo. The story follows an orphan named, Grinpayne, who is scarred with a horrible smile, which he uses a bandage to cover his face and hide. It has music by Tim Phillips and Marc Teitler, with lyrics by Grose, Philips and director Tom Morris.

The musical got its world premiere at Bristol Old Vic last year, starring Louis Maskell and Audrey Brisson, and will open at Trafalgar Studios on 5nd December, with an official opening on 18th December.

Maskell is set reprise his role as Grinpayne, alongside Julian Bleach who also starred in the Bristol run. The remainder of the cast is yet to be announced.

The musical received mostly positive press, with the Observer’s Susannah Clapp calling it “lovely, peculiar stuff” in a four star review, and the Telegraph’s Dominic Cavendish (also four stars) adding: “any show that closes its first half with a maniacal choral number (celebrating the anti-hero’s bizarre newfound messianic appeal) called “A Scar is Born” has got to be worth a look.”

Writer Carl Grose’s previous theatre credits include Grand Guignol at Southwark Playhouse, Beauty and the Beast at the Lyric Hammersmith, and a number of production for Kneehigh, including Cymbeline, The Wild Bride and Hansel and Gretel.

Tom Morris is the artistic director of the Bristol Old Vic, and is best known for co-directing the National Theatre productions - and subsequent West End and Broadway runs – of War Horse. At Bristol Old Vic, he directed Timothy West as King Lear.

The Grinning Man will run at Trafalgar Studios in December.

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