The critically acclaimed “When Midnight Strikes” comes to Bath for the first time this July. It is a relatively new musical and has been produced all around the world including New York, Norway and Australia and it continues to lead the way in new musical theatre but this is the first time it has been seen in the South West. The musical theatre industry is frequently criticised for producing revivals and film based jukebox musicals so it is refreshing that a new piece of musical theatre can have the impact that When Midnight Strikes is having.
Exit Stage Left is a Bath based theatre company that doesn’t shy away from new and interesting work and have performed at the Rondo for the last three years. They have received twelve nominations in the prestigious Rose Bowl and David Beach awards and were delighted to win the coveted Best Musical Award for their productions of “A New Brain” and “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” both relatively unknown musicals.
The musical is set in New York on New Year’s Eve 1999 – the dawn of a new millennium – and Jennifer West’s intimate dinner party for close friends and family begins to fall apart upon the discovery that her husband has been having an affair. To make matters worse she realises that the unknown mistress is one of eleven party guests. As the hosts confront their unravelling marriage, new resolutions, past mistakes, and an uncertain future merge into an explosive and life-altering evening.
Kevin Hammonds’ book is in turn hilarious and moving, the plot keeping the audience on tenterhooks until the finale. With a score by Charles Miller packed with original show-stopping songs, When Midnight Strikes gives a remarkably accurate sense of the brittle gaiety of a New Year party, with all the tensions so often seething beneath the surface.
When Midnight Strikes can be seen at the Rondo Theatre, Larkhall on 16 – 19 July at 8pm. and tickets are £10 adults, £8 concessions and can be bought from Bath Box Office.