Rent is an American Tony Award and Pulitzer Prize-winning rock musical, with music and lyrics by Jonathan Larson. After previews that began on January 26, 1996, it opened in New York City on February 13, 1996, at the New York Theatre Workshop before moving to Broadway, opening at the Netherlander Theatre on April 29, 1996. Based on Giacomo Puccini's opera La boh?me, the musical centers on a group of hard-up young artists and musicians struggling to survive and create in New York's Alphabet City in the last days of the Bohemian East Village, under the shadow of AIDS.
In 2005, the rock opera was also adapted into a full-length motion picture, which features most of the original cast members. Certain plot elements were changed slightly. More noticeably, some of the songs were changed to spoken dialogue, so the movie version is more of a musical film than rock opera.
North American tours
There have been three very successful United States national tours. The
1. Angel Tour
2. Benny Tour
3. Non-Equity tour
There was a Canadian tour which is usually called Collins Tour.
The Angel tour began in November 1996 in Boston. It then went on to St. Paul, Minnesota, Washington, DC, Chicago, Detroit, Cleveland, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Salt Lake City, Denver, and Los Angeles, before finishing in San Francisco in September, 1999.
In addition to the Broadway production and North American tours, Rent has been performed around the world. Cities that have had productions include Sydney, S?o Paulo, Toronto, Shanghai, Helsinki, Berlin, Hong Kong, Budapest, Reykjav?k, Dublin, Rome, Tokyo, Seoul, Mexico City, Auckland, Manila, Amsterdam, and Lisbon, as well as various productions throughout Spain, Sweden, Denmark, Panama, Poland, Switzerland, Estonia, Bolivia, Singapore, France, South Africa, Slovak Republic, Belgium, Austria, Norway, and the United Kingdom.
It has been performed in 20 languages: English, Portuguese, French, Mandarin, Finnish, German, Magyar, Icelandic, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Spanish, Dutch, Swedish, Danish, Polish, Slovak, Estonian, Flemish, and Norwegian.
Tenth Anniversary production
On April 24, 2006, the original Broadway cast reunited for a one-night-only performance of the musical. This performance raised over $2,000,000 for the Jonathan Larson Performing Arts Foundation, Friends in Deed, and the New York Theatre Workshop. Former cast members were invited back and many from prior tours and former Broadway cast members appeared, performing an alternate version of "Seasons of Love" as the finale of the performance.
Rent - School Edition
In 2007, a modified edition of Rent was made available to five non-professional acting groups in the United States for production. Billed as Rent - School Edition, this version omits the song "Contact", and eliminates the coarse language of the original.
London Revival Cast
Rent is set to open back in London at the Duke Of York Theatre on October 16th 2007, previews beginning on the 2nd October 2007. This production is directed by William Baker, who has given it 21st century remix, including the actors speaking in their native accents. Ex-Sugababe Siobhan Donaghy plays Mimi alongside Luke Evans as Roger, Oliver Thornton as Mark, Leon Lopez as Collins and Jay Webb as Angel. Also in the cast are: Francesca Jackson, Craig Stein, Ruth Augilera, Jamie Sampson, Antony Luperi, Earl Perkins, Lewis Griffiths and Philippa Stefani.
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