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It’s official - Pretty Woman: The Musical is finally coming to London

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Katy Henderson
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It’s official: Pretty Woman is coming to London’s West End.

Pretty Woman is often held up as one of the greatest rom coms of our time, and one of the films that made Julia Roberts a star.

In it, Roberts plays free spirited sex worker Vivian, who runs into businessman Edward (Richard Gere) when she finds him having car troubles on Hollywood Boulevard. It isn’t long before Edward is offering her $3,000 to stay with him for the next six days and accompany him to a number of high-profile work events… not to mention buying her a whole new wardrobe.

Over time, the two grow closer, only to discover there are significant hurdles to overcome as they try to bridge the gap between their very different worlds. And, last year, their modern-take on the Cinderella fairy-tale was transformed into a Broadway musical.

Since then, all we’ve wanted to know is when we’d be let in on the action. Now, though, the wait is officially over: Pretty Woman: The Musical will take to London’s West End in 2020.

Featuring original music and lyrics by Grammy Award winner Bryan Adams and Jim Vallance, a book by Garry Marshall and the film’s screenwriter J.F. Lawton, Pretty Woman: The Musical is directed and choreographed by the two-time Tony Award winner Jerry Mitchell.

Speaking about the production, Ambassador Theatre Group Productions’ Adam Speers said: “The West End loves a big night out and none come bigger than this new production re-telling the iconic and much loved movie. The UK has rocked to the legendary work of Bryan Adams and Jim Vallance for decades and we cannot wait to welcome audiences to the show.”

Paula Wagner added: “It is really wonderful that UK audiences will get to experience Pretty Woman: The Musical at the Piccadilly Theatre next year. Bryan and Jim’s original score for the show brings an electric new dimension to Garry Marshall and J.F. Lawton’s beloved film.

“We were so fortunate to have Garry working with J.F. on the book of the show. They really captured the essence of Pretty Woman, and along with Jerry’s skillful direction and choreography, this classic love story really has become a great night out at the theatre. 2020 also marks 30 years since the release of the film, and I can’t think of a better place than the Piccadilly Theatre to celebrate!”.

The music is bound to be impressive: alongside the inclusion of the original song ‘Oh, Pretty Woman’, by Roy Orbison and Bill Dee, the original music by rock duo Adams and Vallance, promises to bring “an electric new dimension” to the story. 

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Unsurprisingly, the remake of the story has proven to be controversial among some critics, particularly in the wake of the #MeToo movement. After all, a lot has changed since 1990, and a story about a sex-worker being dressed up and shown off at high class social events by her client doesn’t necessarily feel like female empowerment at it’s finest. 

However, Roxane Gay, bestselling author of Bad Feminist, previously said that the story of Pretty Woman is far more feminist than people give it credit for.

“Consent is a real part of this movie,” Gay said. “I think the way she acts is pretty feminist, especially for the time. For a woman to be sexy and to be self-actualised in the ways that Vivian is self-actualised is not something we saw a lot of in movies [at the time] other than, like, Terminator. Sarah Connor was totally badass but she was asexual. 

“Here, you have a character who, even though a lot of people wouldn’t have framed it that way, who was pretty badass and sexual and that combination I’ve always found pretty alluring.”

Criticism aside, the musical has proven popular on Broadway, with many fans branding it ‘one of their favourite shows’. And we have a feeling that, for fans of the film, it’s going to prove a must-watch either way.

When can I see Pretty Woman: The Musical? 

Previews of Pretty Woman will commence from Valentine’s Day 2020 at the Piccadilly Theatre and will run for 46 weeks. 

How can I get tickets?

Tickets go on sale on 13th September. For more information or to sign up to the mailing list visit prettywomanthemusical.com

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Image Credit: Rex, Twitter, Instagram

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Katy Henderson

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