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Phil Willmott

A Forthcoming West End Hip-Hop Show will Celebrate Sting

Message in a Bottle London is to get a new jukebox show, MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE, featuring the music of vintage rock star Sting.

Unusually dance is to be the central feature of the piece. But if you’re a fan - don’t worry it’s still going to feature all his hits including Every Breath You Take, Roxanne, Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic, Walking On The Moon, Englishman in New York, Shape of My Heart and Fields of Gold.

Quite a tough job, I’d have thought, integrating them all into a narrative but apparently they have and advance publicity announces that “a village alive with joyous celebrations is suddenly under siege. Determined and daring, three parted siblings step out on their own extraordinary adventures”.

“Highly original lyrical hip hop dance and breath-taking music combine in an uplifting story of humanity and hope”

It’s been commissioned by the Sadler’s Wells Theatre, the capital’s leading venue for dance of all kinds. There’s a while to wait yet but you can see it at their West End theatre, The Peacock, from Thursday 6 February - Saturday 21 March 2020. It then goes on an international tour.

The show will be created by Kate Prince, the triple Olivier Award-nominated choreographer who is best known for the hip-hop inspired work she has made with her own company ZooNation including Some Like it Hip Hop and Into the Hoods.

With other producers her CV includes Everybody’s Talking About Jamie (Sheffield Crucible & West End, nominated for Olivier Award for Best Theatre Choreographer); Ballyturk (National Theatre); Shoes (Sadler’s Wells); I Can’t Sing: the X-Factor Musical (Palladium) and It’s A Mad World my Masters (RSC).

Sting Says: “It’s an intriguing idea to align my songs and music with the work of a successful and highly esteemed choreographer of Kate’s standing. I witnessed one of the first workshops and was very excited by the potential. It’s always interesting when someone from another field offers a fresh and unexpected perspective on your work and I’m so looking forward to seeing the piece.”

Kate Prince says: “I’ve been a fan of Sting and The Police all my life and have seen him play live four times. As a choreographer, when I listen to any music, I am always inspired to create dance, and Sting’s music, which has been playing in my headphones for over 30 years, kept bringing me to the same thought, ‘I want to choreograph to this’. As a body of work it is a choreographer’s dream. I mentioned the idea in passing to Alistair Spalding, who has been supporting my career and ZooNation for 15 years. Pretty soon I found myself nervously entering the lobby of a swanky London hotel to pitch the idea to Sting himself. Much to my complete surprise but complete delight, it is actually happening! All of my work has a narrative. I love stories, and you can expect this to be no different. Sting’s lyrics draw on so many themes, from political to the tragic, from death and heartache to love and hope.”

Sounds like they’ll be having a great time collaborating.