Few productions are as interesting and absorbing as ‘Oliver!’ Premiered in the sixties, the production still hasn’t lost its attraction for theatre fans. Adapted into several other forms of performing arts as well, the play Oliver is indeed one of the most amazing live performances. The play was the first musical adaptation of a work by the famous Charles Dickens which went on to become a smashing international hit. Although the original story has been massively simplified to make it appropriate for a live stage performance, the charm of Dickens’ writing can still be seen in the play. Theatre fans are buying Oliver! tickets to watch this amazing performance.
The two act play ‘Oliver!’ first premiered in 1960 in the West End. The production made a successful Broadway debut followed by tours and revivals. The original plot of the story shows its protagonists to be much evil and villainous; however the adaptation into a stage play has made them more comical and affable. This twist in the story has made the play interesting even for those who have read the book. Oliver! tickets are the new sensation as even the regular theatregoers are excited to see what this amazing production has in store.
A Peek at the Story
Starting from a workhouse, in an enormous dining room, the musical tells the story of starving orphan boys who are only served crumbs. Oliver, being the courageously different boy, dares to ask for more. As a result, he is quickly apprehended and thrown out. Oliver is sold to an undertaker by the merciless wardens of the workhouse. The undertaker and his wife criticize Oliver and make him sleep with the coffins in the basement.
Oliver escapes and after a week of running without direction, he ends up in the city of London where he meets the pickpocket Artful Dodger. Dodger offers Oliver to join him, who unknowingly gets involved and is taught their methods. Oliver continues to meet new people and as his mind opens he finds his world changing around him. The enigmatic storyline of the play remains a matter for the audiences to watch for themselves and gets lost in the incredible and interesting world of Oliver.
The History of Performances
The first ever performance of the play took place in London in 1960 and ran for a total of 2,618 performances. Broadway took on the production two years later and got the musical on a National Tour in 1962. Sean Kenny’s sets were duplicated especially for the performance of Oliver! Sets built in London were shipped along the production and were designed to change colors and lights with every change in the mood of the musical. 1977 saw London reviving the play once again, followed by the 1983 revival in both London theatres as well as Broadway. Each of these productions kept the fan following high and the irresistible charm of the musical intact.
In 2011, Oliver! Came back to the production houses in United Kingdom where it premiered as part of the touring production. Many other international productions of the musical also kept taking place during all this time and made a name everywhere it went. Even today Oliver is among the most popular and most acclaimed theatre productions and theatre fans still rush to buy Oliver! tickets every time a production comes up with the revival of the fascinating performance.