Geoffrey Rush on his Way to the Forum

Geoffrey Rush on his Way to the Forum

Geoffrey Rush will play Pseudolus in a Melbourne-only season of the Stephen Sondheim musical A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum this year, The Age Reports (May 26, 2012).

Simon Phillips who will direct the Forum, to be produced by John Frost.

The 1962 Sondheim musical, based on the Roman farces of Plautus (with a book by Burt Shevelove and Larry Grelbart) is expected to open at Melbouren’s Comedy Theatre in November, made its debut on Broadway in 1962 and won six 1963 Tony awards including best musical and best book.

Forum played 964 performances in its original Broadway run, was made into a film starring its Tony award winning star Zero Mostel, and has been twice revived on Broadway. Phil Silvers and Nathan Lane, who played Pseudolus in those revivals, both won Tony Awards for Best Actor. Whoopi Goldberg succeeded Lane in the roe in the 1996 revival.

J. C. Williamsons staged the original Australian production, playing at the Theatre Royal, Sydney from July 18 to November 14, 1964, Her Majesty’s Theatre, Melbourne from November 18, 1964 to March 27, 1965 and Her Majesty Theatre, Adelaide from March 31 to April 24, 1965.

The Age says that Rush and Phillips have long wanted to stage Forum

Forum will also star Mitchell Butel (Hysterium), Shane Bourne (Senex), Magda Szubanski (Domina), Gerry Connelly (Marcus Lycus), Adam Murphy (Miles Gloriosus), Bob Hornery (Erronius), Hugh Sheridan (Hero) and Christie Whelan (Philia).

Gabriela Tylesova will design the costumes and sets, while the creative team will also include Andrew Hallsworth (Choreographer), Matthew Frank (Musical Director), Guy Simpson (Musical Supervisor) and Dean Bryant (Associate Director).

Official launch with cast photos

More reading - Musicals in 2012 and Beyond.

Subscribe to Stage Whispers by October 16 and be in the running to win preview tickets.

To keep up with the latest news and reviews at Stage Whispers, click here to like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.