Metropolis was a musical based on the 1927 movie of the same name that was staged at the Piccadilly Theatre in London in 1989. The music was written by Joe Brooks while he and Dusty Hughes wrote the lyrics. The show was directed by Jerome Savary. The cast included Judy Kuhn (Maria/Futura), Brian Blessed (John Freeman), Graham Bickley (Steven), Jonathan Adams (Warner), Paul Keown (Jeremiah) and Stifyn Parri (George).
After that time Joe Brooks worked with American Randy Bowser at editing the already finished musical. By 2002 they had created a more complete libretto to the show, and it was first produced at the Pentacle Theater in Salem, Oregon.
Main changes between the silent film and the musical are name changes for many of the characters (John Fredersen = John Freeman, Freder = Steven, Rotwang = Warner), slightly different religious themes, a completely different ending, and a larger focus on the children ("Metropolis the Musical").
The city of Metropolis, in around the year 2000. The workers operate vast machines below the city. They power the piviledged lifes of the upper class at the surface of the city. For the workers, it is forbidden to read and to learn. Thery never see daylight.
The city was built by John Freeman, who now runs it like a despot. His son Steven lives the privileged life of the sons of the upper class, playing at games and taking his pleasures in the Eternal Gardens, unknowing of the dark secrects below the city.
That is, until he sees a young woman from the lower depths of the city. Maria escapes briefly from "down below", showing some of the children of the workers how the rich enjoy themselves. In pursuit of this vision, Steven ends up at one of the machines: Shocked by seeing how the workers suffer for no apparent purpose, he trades places with worker 11811 (George). It seems that there is a group of discontents who attend talks by Maria in the catacombs.
Meanwhile the inventor Warner has developed the man machine 'Futura'. John Freeman wants to use the machine to deceive his son Steven and the workers as an attempt to break down the burgeoning resistance. Freeman wants the machine to take the form of Maria and to use it to discredit and destroy her...
Original London Cast
Brian Blessed (JOHN FREEMAN)
Judy Kuhn (MARIA/FUTURA)
Graham Bickley (STEVEN)
Jonathan Adams (WARNER)
Paul Keown (JEREMIAH)
Stifyn Parri (GEORGE)
Lindsey Danvers (JADE)
Colin Fay (GROAT)
Megan Kelly (LAKE)
Robert Fardell (MARCO)
Lucy Dixon (LULU)
Keven Power (WORKER 1)
Gael Johnson (BESO)
Buz Butler, Joseph Lloyd Collatin, Stephen J. Colley, Mhairi Nelson, Geoffrey Dallamore, Teresa Revill, Mark Fredrick, Scott St. Martyn, Liz Izen, Simon Shelton, Martyn Knight, Charles Shirwell, Bo Light, Julie Ann Ward, Simon Warwich
Oswald Bailey, Ian McGregor, Amanda Cannon, Jean Paul Pfluger, David Cooper, Elizabeth Pearce, Clare Humphrey, James Tovell, Lucy Indrisie, Emmaline Wood
101.11 - Company
HOLD BACK THE NIGHT - Maria, Jade, George, Marco & Company
THE MACHINES ARE BEAUTIFUL - Freeman
HE'S DISTANT FROM ME NOW - Steven
ELITISTS' DANCE (Instrumental) CHILDREN OF METROPOLIS - Maria
ONE MORE MORNING - Steven
IT'S ONLY LOVE - Steven
BRING ON THE NIGHT - Maria
YOU ARE THE LIGHT - Maria and Company
THE SUN - George
THERE'S A GIRL DOWN BELOW - Jeremiah
FUTURA - Warner, Freeman and company
WE'RE HE CREAM - Elitists
THIS IS LIFE - Steven, Jeremiah and Company
FUTURA'S DANCE - Maria and Company
IF THAT WAS LOVE - Steven
LISTEN TO ME - Steven and George
LEARNING SONG - Maria and Children
OLD FRIENDS - Warner
WHEN MARIA WAKES - Company
FUTURA'S PROMISE - Futura
HAVEN'T YOU FINISHED WITH ME? - Maria and Warner
LET'S WATCH THE WORLD GO TO THE DEVIL - Futura and Company
ONE OF THESE NIGHTS - Maria
REQUIEM - Company
METROPOLIS - Freeman
FINALE - Company
It has been announced that the musical will be staged again in early 2007 in Berlin, Germany, produced and directed by Sabine Otto with a slightly reworked score by Joe Brooks.
Joe Brooks at the IMDb
Judy Kuhn at the IMDb
Brian Blessed at the IMDb
Stifyn Parri at the IMDb
Graham Bickley at the IMDb
Jerome Savary at the IMDb
Dusty Hughes at the IMDb
Paul Keown at the IMDb
Metropolis at the "Guide to Musical Theatre"
Personal interview, Randy Bowser, March 2004.
"Metropolis the Musical." Randy Bowser. <http://rbowser.tripod.com/metropolis/indexc.html>