Updated Beauty and the Beast to tour in 2021

Published: 7 November 2020
Reporter: Steve Orme

Making “full use” of modern technology: Beauty and the Beast

Disney's Olivier Award-winning stage musical Beauty and the Beast is to be reimagined and redesigned in a new production which will begin a UK and Ireland tour in May 2021 at Leicester’s Curve theatre.

Rob Roth, a Tony-nominee for the original production, will again direct, leading a team that includes composer Alan Menken, lyricist Tim Rice, bookwriter Linda Woolverton, choreographer Matt West, scenic designer Stan Meyer, costume designer Ann Hould-Ward and lighting designer Natasha Katz. The team received five Tony nominations, with Hould-Ward's costume design taking the accolade, when Disney debuted Beauty and the Beast on Broadway in 1994.

Roth said, "I’m so excited to première this new production of Beauty in the UK. The entire original creative team has reassembled and we've reimagined the visual aspects of the show completely, making full use of all the newest technologies in stage craft, lighting and costume construction.

“Many of these elements hadn't been invented when we first developed the show. I speak for the whole team when I say how fortunate we all feel to be given the opportunity to reimagine the show for the 21st century.”

Menken commented, "Beauty and the Beast is a testament to the genius of my late friend and collaborator Howard Ashman but the show's richness comes from the combination of Howard's style and that of the brilliant Tim Rice with whom I expanded the score to give voice to the Beast.

“It's clear that audiences want to return to the world of Beauty which continues to amaze and humble those of us who created it. As the show returns to the UK, I can’t wait to see how Rob Roth and this glorious creative team bring the whole universe of Beauty and the Beast to life once again."

The tour will begin at Curve on Tuesday 25 May 2021. Other dates so far announced are Bord Gáis Energy Theatre, Dublin 8–3 July, Bristol Hippodrome 12 August to 18 September, Liverpool Empire 23 September to 16 October and Edinburgh Playhouse 21 October to 27 November.