'Whoa, this is heavy!' Back to the Future musical to open in London next year

Production featuring spectacular effects will transfer to Adelphi theatre in May

London’s West End theatres remain mostly shuttered due to the Covid-19 pandemic but, if the calculations are correct, a new musical version of Back to the Future will land there in May next year.

It is a transfer for a production that opened at Manchester Opera House in March, starring Olly Dobson as teenage time-traveller Marty McFly and Roger Bart as the zany inventor “Doc” Emmett Brown.

The musical has a book by Bob Gale and music and lyrics by Alan Silvestri and Glen Ballard, alongside classic rock’n’roll songs such as Johnny B Goode from the 1985 movie starring Michael J Fox. Christopher Lloyd, who starred as Doc in the film, said: “I’ve already heard some of the new songs and met many of the cast members, particularly Roger Bart who plays Doc, so I’m confident the stage version will be exactly what our fans have been hoping for. And, Great Scott – I can’t wait to hear Doc Brown sing!”

Gale said the production, directed by John Rando, showcases “groundbreaking stagecraft, which we firmly believe raises the bar for production design and illusion. You will be convinced that the DeLorean really does go 88 miles per hour.” After watching the show in Manchester, one audience member told the Guardian: “The final action sequence alone was worth the price of admission.”

The show previews from 14 May at the Adelphi theatre, owned by Andrew Lloyd Webber. On Tuesday, the composer and impresario borrowed a song title from his hit show The Phantom of the Opera when he told the parliamentary select committee that Covid had brought the arts sector to “the point of no return”. Lloyd Webber called once more for the government to give the theatre industry a date when they can reopen at full capacity for indoor performances.


Chris Wiegand

The GuardianTramp

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