Winner of the Tony Award for Best Musical in 2005, a UK touring production of Spamalot has been working its way around the country in 2012. Described as “a gem of a show” the musical has received some very positive reviews, which has earned it a place in London’s West End this summer.
Spamalot is set to transfer into the Harold Pinter Theatre in July for a limited run till 3rd September 2012. (now transferred to The Playhouse Theatre) The musical takes inspiration from the classic 1975 Monty Python film Monty Python and the Holy Grail and parodies the tale of King Arthur and his knights of the Round Table in a way you’ve never seen before. Featuring killer rabbits, show girls and witch burnings, the ‘infectiously funny’ Spamalot has had audiences the world over laughing since it first appeared on Broadway in 2005. It was nominated for fourteen Tony Awards and won three, including Best Direction of a Musical (Mike Nichols) and Best Featured Actress in a Musical (Sara Ramirez). Written by Monty Python team member Eric Idle, John Du Prez also collaborated on a majority of the music. Subsequent tour productions followed its Broadway debut and it transferred to the West End’s Palace Theatre in 2006; after its closure there in 2009, a UK tour production embarked in 2010. Further productions of Spamalot have turned up across the globe, in countries such as Australia, Las Vegas, New Zealand, Spain, Germany, Hungary and Sweden.
The musical features a score of hilarious songs, like ‘He Is Not Dead Yet’, ‘Find Your Grail’ and ‘Run Away’, and also includes Eric Idle and Neil Innes’ original songs for the Monty Python film, ‘Knights Of The Round Table’ and ‘Brave Sir Robin’. Of course, Spamalot wouldn’t be complete with Idle’s award winning ‘Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life’, which has become ingrained in so many minds.
The UK tour of Spamalot boasts a stellar cast of twelve, who often play multiple roles within the production. Comedian Marcus Brigstocke plays the leading role of the legendary King Arthur, alongside former Eastenders actor Todd Carty as sidekick Patsy and West End star Bonnie Langford as The Lady of the Lake. Playing King Arthur’s loyal knights are Kit Orton (Sir Lancelot), Jon Robyns (Sir Galahad), Robin Armstrong (Sir Bedevere) and Rob Delaney (Sir Robin). The rest of the cast is made up of Adam Ellis, Tim Bonser, Niall Sheehey, Rachel Knowles, Hannah Malekzad, James Nelson, Michael Burgen and Amelia Adams-Pearse.
Life is hard for many people right now and if you watch the news, there are more grim times ahead, so if you find a little light relief to escape the troubles of the world for a while then you should take the opportunity. Spamalot is a fun, feel-good musical that takes light-hearted entertainment to new levels of silliness. The comedy of Monty Python makes people laugh just as much today as it did 37 years ago; it’s timeless. So when Spamalot arrives in the West End this summer, go and see it. You’re sure to leave seeing the brighter side of life.
By Julie Robinson (@missjulie25)
Content updated 1st May 2014