The full cast for the musical stage adaptation of best-selling novel The Book Thief have been announced, including Coventry local Daniel Krikler as ‘Max Vandenburg’. The musical will run at Coventry’s Belgrade Theatre from 11-16 September 2023.
A mesmerising new musical based on Markus Zusak‘s international bestselling novel, The Book Thief is adapted by award-winning bestselling author Jodi Picoult (My Sister’s Keeper) and Timothy Allen McDonald (Roald Dahl’s James and the Giant Peach, Between the Lines) with music and lyrics by Kate Anderson and Elyssa Samsel (Central Park AppleTV+).
The Book Thief had an extremely well-received initial presentation at the Octagon Theatre, Bolton in 2022 for which it was nominated for a WhatsOnStage Award for Best Regional Production.
Krikler, who reprises his role from the Bolton run and recently performed at The Belgrade’s B2 in last year’s acclaimed production of Fighting Irish said, “I’m so excited to be coming to The Belgrade, my home theatre, with The Book Thief, having performed here last year in Fighting Irish. As a member of Coventry’s Jewish community from a young child, there is no place I’d rather be telling this beautiful, important story. Coventry has its own deep connection to the Second World War with the Blitz very much in living memory, so I know how much the show will resonate here with the community.”
Alongside Krikler, The Book Thief will star Obioma Ugoala (Frozen the Musical, Hamilton) as Narrator, Mina Anwar (The Sarah Jane Adventures, The Worst Witch) as Rosa Hubermann and Jack Lord (West Side Story, War Horse) as Hans Hubermann. Joining them are Storytellers Matthew Caputo (Hamilton) as Referee, Katy Clayton (The Band) as Liesel’s Mother, Oonagh Cox (Matilda: The Musical) as Nurse, Mark Dugdale (Les Miserables) as Alex Steiner, Michał Horowicz (The Band’s Visit) as Max’s Mother, Thomas-Lee Kidd (Beauty and the Beast) as Mayor Hermann, Anu Ogunmefun (Tina: The Tina Turner Musical) as Swing, Simon Oskarsson (A Midsummer Night’s Dream) as Swing, Corinna Powlesland (Grease) as Social Worker, Purvi Parmar (The Jungle Book) as Barbara Steiner, Wendy Somerville (Billy Elliot) as Ilsa Hermann, Edwin Ray (Chicago) as Walter Kugler, Lee V G (Only Fools & Horses: The Musical) as Gravedigger and Russell Wilcox (The Producers) as Wolfgang Edel. Liesel Meminger will be played by Tilly-Raye Bayer (Frozen The Musical), Mollie Casserley (The Sound of Music) and Eirini Louskou (Joseph & The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat) and Rudy Steiner will be played by Thommy Bailey Vine (Matilda The Musical), Preston Cropp (Professional Debut) and Oliver Gordon (Newsies).
By her brother’s graveside, 12-year-old Liesel steals a book abandoned in the snow – her first act of book thievery. Soon she is stealing from libraries, churches, and book burnings. But these are dangerous times for a girl with a curious mind. When her foster family hides a Jewish boxer in their cellar, Liesel learns that words are so much more than letters on a page – they hold power. As the Nazi regime wields words as weapons, Liesel, determined to fight back, picks up her pen and starts to write…
The Book Thief will be directed by Lotte Wakeham (The Book Thief, Shirley Valentine, A Midsummer Night’s Dream), with Libretto by Jodi Picoult (Breathe, Between The Lines) & Timothy Allen McDonald (Roald Dahl’s James & The Giant Peach and Willy Wonka), Music and Lyrics by Elyssa Samsel & Kate Anderson (Olaf’s Frozen Adventure, Central Park), Set & Costume Design by Good Teeth (Little Shop of Horrors, Jack and the Beanstalk), Choreography by Tom Jackson Greaves (Rent, Whistle Down the Wind, Romeo & Juliet), Orchestrations & Arrangements, Musical Supervision & Musical Director by Matthew Malone (Peter Pan, Carousel), Lighting Design by Nic Farman (Allegiance, The Diary of a CEO Live), Sound Design by Andy Graham (Aladdin, The Wizard of Oz), Video Design by Dick Straker (A Monster Calls, Peer Gynt), Puppet Design by Sam Wilde (A Christmas Carol, The Fir Tree), Casting by Abby Galvin for Jessica Ronane Casting (The Glass Menagerie, Girl from the North Country), Production Management by Andy Fox and Lee Batty for Setting Line Production Management (Newsies, The Cher Show), Associate Direction by Martha Geelan (Fiddler on the Roof) and Anna Pool (A Little Night Music), Associate Choreography by Tinovimbanashe Sibanda (Moulin Rouge), and Associate Musical Direction by George Strickland (Allegiance). THE BOOK THIEF is produced by Deus Ex Machina Productions (Ride: A New Musical, Adrian Mole) with Writer’s Cage, Christopher Ketner, and Andrew Paradis, in association with Belgrade, Coventry.