Close
 

War Dance: the brand-new show on Ventura

20/04/2017

Two rival dance troupes go head to head in Headliners’ spectacular new production

Headliners Theatre Company performers rehearse War Dance

Rehearsing at The Academy in Southampton

P&O Cruises in-house production company Headliners is excited to introduce a brand-new production to its repertoire. War Dance is about two rival dance troupes – one Fred and Ginger fanatics, the other street dancers – both competing for the life-changing opportunity to perform in a top new production by a mysterious producer, whom none of them have met. It’s an explosion of music and dance, with an exciting twist.

 

The show was created by the P&O Cruises Academy team in conjunction with the Arlons, a family who have spent their lives managing talent and producing shows. Deke Arlon began as a singer and actor in the 1950s, then switched to music publishing and never looked back. His first hit record was Louis Armstrong’s What a Wonderful World and since then he’s sold more than 200 million records, working with stars including Dennis Waterman, Elaine Paige, Ned Sherrin and Michael Flatley. Deke and his wife Jill, a successful television and film writer, have been producing hit shows in the West End and on Broadway for more than 40 years. Their current musical, Sunny Afternoon, featuring music by The Kinks, is touring after a West End stint that won them four Olivier Awards.

 

For this production, they’re working with their son, Jamie Arlon, who is also a music publisher and theatre producer. Jill and Jamie wrote War Dance together – originally as a full-length musical, which they’ve edited down to a snappy 45-minute extravaganza for the Headliners Theatre Company’s hugely talented and versatile Ventura crew.

Headliners Theatre Company performers rehearse War Dance

Rehearsing at The Academy in Southampton

More narrative than other Headliners’ shows, War Dance has proved a fresh challenge for the performers, due to the amount of dialogue they have to deliver. However, according to producers Deke and Jamie, they’ve more than risen to the challenge: ‘The cast have come through with flying colours,’ says Deke. ‘They really are a tremendous bunch.’

 

The cast have also had to cope with an incredibly diverse mix of dance styles in the show’s routines, which were choreographed by Gary Lloyd, whose West End production Thriller Live is currently on tour. Gary is also the show’s director, and is equally impressed by his cast: ‘It’s been a phenomenal learning experience for them to go from tango to Fosse to Lindy Hop to street dance and then back to ballroom,’ he says.

 

Tackling the show’s equally diverse music selection was a job for Mike Moran, who has worked with the likes of David Bowie and Freddie Mercury, among other music legends. The songs, which were chosen mostly for their story-telling lyrics, include well-known numbers such as Cole Porter’s Night and Day and Michael Jackson’s Smooth Criminal, as well as some lesser-known tracks.

 

With its captivating storyline and music and dance crossing the decades, War Dance really does offer something for all ages. 

 

Catch War Dance on cruises on Ventura this summer >

This website uses cookies to give you the very best user experience. By using our website, you agree that we can place cookies on your device. For more information see the About Cookies link at the bottom of this page.

Close

Close