Passion at Hope Mill Theatre

Kristy Stott, Theatre Editor
Passion at Hope Mill
Image courtesy of Mark Senior.

Passion at Hope Mill Theatre, Manchester, 5 May–5 June 2022, from £39.50 - Book now

Featuring the music and lyrics of the late Stephen Sondheim, a dynamic new staging of the legendary musical Passion comes to Hope Mill Theatre’s intimate stage. This thrilling musical revival – which explores themes of intense adoration and obsessive desire – will be led by the incredible Olivier Award-winning musical icon Ruthie Henshall.

Led by the incredible Olivier Award-winning musical icon Ruthie Henshall

Based on Ettore Scola’s Italian film, Passion d’Amore (1981), which has been adapted from Iginio Uno Tarchetti’s 1869 novel Fosca, Passion is arguably one of Sondheim’s most romantic and lyrical works. Taking place in 19th Century Italy, the production tells the tale of a young soldier, Giorgio who thinks he is in love with Clara, a married woman. However, when Giorgio is transferred to a provincial outpost, he finds himself pursued obsessively by his commanding officer’s cousin, Fosca – a woman who is susceptible to severe melancholy and mania.

With a book by James Lapine, this multi-award-winning tale of love, sex and obsession will be directed by Sondheim savant Michael Strassen (Company, Pacific Overtures) with movement direction by Sundeep Saini (As You Like It, Little Shop of Horrors) and musical direction by Yshani Perinpanayagam (London Musical Theatre Orchestra).

With West End legend (and ‘I’m a Celebrity’ star!) Ruthie Henshall (Les Miserables) taking the role of Fosca alongside Dean John-Wilson (Steven Spielberg’s Masters of Air, Apple TV) as Giorgio, the soldier at the heart of a passionate affair; Kelly Price (What’s New Pussycat?, Birmingham REP) will step into the role of Clara, and the cast is completed by Adam Robert Lewis (The Phantom of the Opera, Her Majesty’s Theatre), Charlie Waddell (South Pacific, Chichester Festival Theatre), Danny Whitehead (Wicked, UK tour), Dalton Harris (The X Factor), Ray Shell (Starlight Express), Steve Watts (As You Like It, Cheek by Jowl), and Tim Walton (Matilda The Musical, RSC).

Passion is one of Sondheim’s lesser-known musicals, but quite possibly one of his most powerful works.

An intense study of love and an examination of the lengths that people will go to for desire, Passion is one of Sondheim’s lesser-known musicals, but quite possibly one of his most powerful works. Of the show, Ruthie Henshall said, “ I’m so thrilled to be part of this ensemble of unbelievable talent, as we bring to life one of my all-time favourite musicals – a real pinch-me moment! The legacy of Sondheim’s work is so important to us all, and I couldn’t think of a better group of people to be working with. It’s going to be a very special creative process to be a part of.”


Passion at Hope Mill Theatre, Manchester

5 May–5 June 2022
From £39.50

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