Following on from this year’s production of Sweeney Todd, The English National Opera recently announced that Glenn Close will be making her West End debut in 2016, reprising one of her most famous roles, Norma Desmond in Sunset Boulevard.
At yesterday’s press launch, held in the Sky Bar of the ENO, Edward Seckerson spoke in depth with lyricists Don Black, Christopher Hampton and of course the lady herself, Glenn Close.
Glenn Close is a household name due to the huge success she had starring in the 1987 movie Fatal Attraction but her theatre career was more than off the ground by the time this happened (having already starred as Chairy Barnum in the Broadway production of Barnum). In 1993, after having worked with Christopher Hampton on the 1988 film version of his play Dangerous Liaisons, he approached her about the role of Norma Desmond in Sunset Boulevard. She sang for composer Andrew Lloyd Webber at his home and whilst she wasn’t perfect, Andrew said “she has it in her voice” and the role was hers.
Sunset Boulevard is based on the 1950 movie, which tells the story of Norma Desmond, a faded silent movie star who dreams of being back in the spotlight. This new musical production, (which will run for 43 performances only), will be backed by a full on-stage Orchestra in this semi-staged production.
When talking about returning to play a role she created more than 20 years ago, Glenn says that Norma Desmond has become the fabric of her being and is a part of who she is now and has been for 20 years.
How is Glenn going to prepare herself for returning to this role? “I’m getting back on the treadmill” she says, determined to be in good shape for the marathon role of Norma Desmond which opens at the English National Opera on 1 April 2016 and will run until 7 May 2016.
Sunset Boulevard will show at the London Coliseum between 1 April – 7 May 2016, book now at Ticketmaster.co.uk.
West End Wilma