Page last updated at 09:30 GMT, Friday, 14 November 2008

Billy musical opens on Broadway


The show is based on the hit 2000 film starring Jamie Bell

The musical version of hit film Billy Elliot has opened on Broadway, with composer Sir Elton John and director Stephen Daldry in attendance.

Actor Kevin Spacey, comedy star Rosie O'Donnell and director Ron Howard were among the first night audience at New York's Imperial Theatre.

Critics have given the show the thumbs up, with the New York Times calling it "intoxicating" and "seductive".

Billy Elliot opened in London in 2005. A Sydney production followed in 2007.

Sir Elton donned a tutu at the end of the show as he joined the show's three young leads for the curtain call.

"I never thought in a million years I'd ever be standing in Broadway talking about something I'd written for the stage." he told reporters.

'Triumph over adversity'

Based on the 2000 film which Daldry also directed, Billy Elliot tells of a young boy from the North of England who longs to dance.

Stephen Daldry and Sir Elton John
Daldry (left) directed both the original film and its musical adaptation
Jamie Bell played Billy in the original film, which was set against the backdrop of the 1980s miners' strike.

Sir Elton, accompanied by his partner David Furnish, said the musical was about "triumph over adversity".

"It's something beautiful coming out of something tragic," he added.

Trade newspaper Variety agreed, saying US audiences will "have no trouble connecting with the universal sentiment of this bittersweet dual celebration of community and individuality".

"The frazzled warmth of the performances is contagious, right down to the smallest bit part," its critic continued.

Other stars attending Thursday's launch included Natasha Richardson, Rachel Weisz and talk show host Barbara Walters.

The London production of Billy Elliot continues at the Victoria Palace Theatre, where it is currently booking until October 2009.

Print Sponsor

Last of Billy Elliot trio departs
01 Oct 06 |  Entertainment
Sir Elton in tutu at Elliot show
13 May 06 |  Entertainment
Critics lay into Elton's musical
26 Apr 06 |  Entertainment
Elliot musical leads stage awards
27 Feb 06 |  Entertainment

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific