The Menier Chocolate Factory today announces that Elena Skye will play Twiggy in the world première of Close Up – The Twiggy Musical. Written and directed by Ben Elton, the production opens on 27 September, with previews from 18 September, and runs until 18 November.
Twiggy said today, “It’s very unexpected, but truly an honour, to see my own life translated onto stage – and I can’t imagine a better, more generous, collaborator than Ben. I’ve been approached before about sharing my story, but never has the alchemy felt so right.”
Ben Elton added, “I’m thrilled to be bringing Twiggy’s incredible story to the stage, with an amazing creative team at the Menier – the perfect home to begin our journey. Very London, very authentic, and such wonderful intimacy in which to stage this musical. In Elena, we’ve found a glorious talent – not just a unique voice, but someone who’s funny, honest and utterly authentic, very much like Twiggy herself.”
Completing the season is the Menier and Umeda Arts Theater’s co-production of Stephen Sondheim and John Weidman’s Pacific Overtures – directed by Matthew White – which opened earlier this year at the Nissay Theatre in Tokyo. The musical, which was significantly revised by both Sondheim and Weidman in 2017, will be seen here in the UK for the time in this version. This continues the venue’s history of Sondheim collaborations, which also sees the company’s production of Merrily We Roll Along open on Broadway later this year.
The story of a skinny kid from Neasden who became the most famous teenager on the planet and the ‘face of the 1960s’ may seem like the stuff of fairy tales, but there is tragedy as well as triumph in this intimate portrayal of a true 20th century icon. It’s the story of a young working class woman who faced snobbery and sexism in a pre-Me Too world and yet achieved her dreams without ever compromising who she was. Author and director Ben Elton charts Twiggy’s journey through laughter and tears from the suburbs of London to the world’s fashion capitals to Hollywood and Broadway and ultimately to becoming a national treasure and Dame of the Realm. All accompanied by a fabulous score featuring the hits that have been the soundtrack to Twiggy’s life. Grab your miniskirt and re-live the swinging ‘60s and soulful ‘70s in this joyful, uplifting and empowering world première musical!
Elena Skye plays Twiggy. Her theatre work includes Lauren in Kinky Boots (Adelphi Theatre), Eponine in Les Misérables (Queen’s Theatre) and as Scaramouche in We Will Rock You (London Coliseum and UK tour).