POSTED: 12 JULY 2010

Sydney lands Doctor Zhivago world premiere*

The NSW Minister for Tourism, Jodi McKay, announced today that Sydney will next year host the world premiere of Doctor Zhivago, a new musical starring Anthony Warlow.

The production will be directed by Broadway’s Des McAnuff (Jersey Boys, Tommy), with music composed by Lucy Simon (The Secret Garden), lyrics by Michael Korie and Amy Powers, and book by Michael Weller. Produced by John Frost, Doctor Zhivago will play an eight-week season at the Lyric Theatre, Star City, from 11 February.

Based on the famous novel by Boris Pasternak, Doctor Zhivago hit the big screen in 1965 as an epic romantic drama romance which created a star of Omar Sharif in the title role. The film remained popular for decades, and as of 2010 was the eighth highest grossing film of all time. Now this grand romance comes to the stage as a powerful and moving musical.

“I’m honoured to bring this timeless story to the stage, and especially thrilled that the world premiere will be held in Sydney, with the assistance of Events NSW and Tourism NSW,” said John Frost.

“It is wonderful to be working again with composer Lucy Simon — our production of her musical The Secret Garden is still much remembered — and for the first time with legendary Broadway director Des McAnuff. And it’s also thrilling to work again with Anthony Warlow, one of the preeminent musical theatre performers in the world.”

In the early 1990s composer Lucy Simon was in Australia attending rehearsals for The Secret Garden. As she watched Anthony Warlow portray the tortured Archie, she said to John Frost, “There is my Zhivago.”

“Anthony commands a stage, a rare leading man – he gets behind the character and with that unique voice enriches the story being told. I knew in my heart that here was the man to tell this love story,” she said.

*Based on media release issued by IP Publicity.

Anthony Warlow in Phantom of the Opera ... a new leading role awaits him in Doctor Zhivago.