1999 January to March

1st January – continuing until 14th February – GOLDILOCKS AND THE THREE BEARS

17th February – THE RUSSIAN ICE STARS ICE STARS – CINDERELLA

On the stage – for five days – THE RUSSIAN ICE STARS – CINDERELLA – The Russian Ice Stars returned to the Mayflower for the fourth time bringing their unique brand of innovative skating and story-telling to the tale of Cinderella, all performed in the intimacy of a frozen theatre stage.

An excerpt from Cinderella On Ice

21st February – CLOSED

27th February – ENGLISH NATIONAL BALLET

On the stage – for SEVEN days – ENGLISH NATIONAL BALLET – ROMEO AND JULIET – Derek Dean had adapted his “in the round” production for the conventional proscenium stage and these were its first performances. The days leading up to the debut on the Saturday, the theatre was closed in order that the company could ready the production.

The part of Mercutio was played by Dmitri Gruzdyev who was born in Russia and trained at the Vaganova Ballet Academy (1981 – 1989) studying under Sokolov. He joined the Kirov Ballet Company in 1989 as a Soloist and was taught by Berezhnoi, Semyonov, Kolpakova and Terekhova. Dmitri won first prize at the first Vaganova Ballet competition in 1988. He joined English National Ballet in September 1993 following a successful season with the Kirov Ballet at the London Coliseum in the summer. Dmitri has created the role of Mercutio in Derek Deane’s Romeo and Juliet.

Juliet is danced by Tamara Rojo was born in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, to Spanish parents who moved back to Spain when she was four months old. She started taking local dance classes at the age of five in Spain. At the age of 11, she became a full-time student at the Madrid Royal Conservatory of Dance Real Conservatorio Profesional de Danza Mariemma, studying under Víctor Ullate and Karemia Moreno. She went on to attain Bachelor of Dance and Master of Scenic Arts degrees and ultimately achieved a PhD in performing arts, becoming D.A. Magna Cum Laude from the King Juan Carlos University. Rojo began her professional career in 1991 with the Ballet de la Comunidad de Madrid, under the direction of Victor Ullate. In 1994, she won the Gold Medal at the Paris International Dance competition plus a Special Jury Award given by Natalia Makarova, Vladimir Vasiliev, and Galina Samsova, a panel of some of the most outstanding figures of the ballet world.In 1996, Rojo was invited by Galina Samsova to join the Scottish National Ballet. While there, she performed the principal roles in Swan Lake, The Nutcracker, La Sylphide, and Cranko’s Romeo and Juliet. In 1997, the Artistic Director of the English National Ballet, Derek Deane asked her to join the company – he created the role of Juliet in “Romeo and Juliet” for her; and the role of Clara in “The Nutcracker” for which The Times named her “Dance Revelation of the Year” in 1997. She joined up with English National Ballet in 1998 specifically to dance the role of Juliet.

The balcony pas de deux from Derek Deane’s production

9th March – SOUTH PACIFIC

On the stage – for five days – SOUTH PACIFIC _ Southampton Musical Society – In 1999, Southampton Musical Society (SMS) staged its final show at the Mayflower mainly due to the enormous cost of hiring the theatre and the difficulty in competing with touring professional companies. It was the fourth time that the company had produced South Pacific at this theatre and it was thought that this would be an apprpriaye goodbye. They had been at the Gaumont Theatre since 1960, initially under the direction of long standing members Dorothy Snook and Frederick Duerden. In its heyday, SMS staged two major productions per year at the Gaumont, under the direction of Charles Rose between 1963 and 1971, when large scale productions were staged. In 1972 SMS took a new direction, employing professional producers and this continued through to this final production at the Mayflower.

16th March – ANNIE

On the stage– for 11 days – (theatre closed on 14th, 15th and 21st March) – ANNIE – This was the first professional production of the musical ANNIE, by Charles Strouse (music), Martin Charnin (lyrics) and Thomas Meehan (book) to play the Mayflower. It starred Anita Dobson as Miss Hannigan and Alex Bourne as Oliver Warbucks. It tells the story of orphan Annie and is set in 1930s New York during The Great Depression. Brave young Annie is forced to live a life of misery and torment at Miss Hannigan’s orphanage. Determined to find her real parents, her luck changes when she is chosen to spend Christmas at the residence of famous billionaire, Oliver Warbucks. Spiteful Miss Hannigan has other ideas and hatches a plan to spoil Annie’s search…

The trailer for the 1999 tour – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=spgqU9Tt1g8

The finale for this production – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eW9uoOqdlbk

30th March – HAPPY DAYS

On the stage – for six days -HAPPY DAYS – From the team that produced Boogie Nights, Buddy, Fame and Jolson, HAPPY DAYS premiered in the UK in 1999 when it embarked on a short tour calling at the Mayflower. It was a nostalgic songfest of the 1950s. There was plenty of colour and movement, dazzling costumes, excellent staging, bright choreography and stunning use of the impressive lighting but little plot and a lot of over-acting. It was basically an excuse to play the great hits from rock’n’roll’s heyday, songs such as Jailhouse Rock, Great Balls Of Fire and Johnny B Goode. It moved on to perform an Arena tour in Australia. Other than the title and the characters it has nothing to do with the another Happy Days musical which debuted in at the theatre in 2014.

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