Exclusive: Former Kinks frontman Ray Davies is making a return to musical theatre, having written a new show that will premiere at the Theatre Royal Stratford East this year. It is also rumoured that Davies will be appearing in the show himself.
Stratford East artistic director Kerry Michael told The Stage: “The Ray Davies musical is taking place. However, we can’t confirm yet whether Ray will actually be appearing in it himself.”
Davies, who was singer-songwriter for the band and was responsible for pop hits including Waterloo Sunset, You Really Got Me and Lola, has created a batch of new songs for the show, which will be called Come Dancing.
The title track, a 1983 hit for the Kinks, will be the only previously released number in the show, which is set in and around the Ilford Palais in the fifties and will, according to its producers, evoke “a time when Saturday night dancing at the local palais was the magical, not to be missed highlight of every young person’s week”.
He has previously written for the stage with his 1981 show Chorus Girls, which was also performed at Stratford East.
The new musical will be directed by Michael, while the story, music and lyrics are by Davies, with a book by Davies and Paul Sirett, and additional material by Terry Johnson. It will open on September 13 and run until October 25.
Previous Stratford East musicals such as The Big Life and The Harder They Come have transferred from the venue to the West End and, if successful, Come Dancing could do the same.