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Loreena McKennitt
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Grease The Musical
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The history | David Gilmore | Director and choreographer interview

History

Grease

Grease

Grease

David Gilmore was born in London and educated at Alleyn's School, Dulwich, in South-East London. He spent several years working in all aspects of stage management before becoming an actor. For ten years he played leading roles in major regional companies. On becoming a director he ran the idyllically beautiful Watermill Theatre in Berkshire for three years, and was then appointed Artistic Director of the Nuffield Theatre on the University campus at Southampton. During his five-year tenure the company established a national reputation for the production of new plays, neglected classics and European drama.
During this period he directed The Tempest and The Merchant of Venice by Shakespeare, Candida by Shaw, The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui by Brecht, Chekhov's Uncle Vanya, Ibsen's Hedda Gabler, Summer and Smoke by Tennessee Williams, and productions by authors such as Rattigan, Coward, Frayn, Wedekind and Christopher Hampton, in addition to half a dozen musicals. He also adapted Fernando de Rojas's Celestina for the stage.

During the last few years much of David's work has been overseas. Last year his production of Happy Days opened the Olympic Superdome in Sydney in front of an audience of 20,000. At the same time his European productions of Grease were playing in Munich and Paris.
His production of La Haut, a French comedy operetta, which he originally directed for the Théâtre des Celestins in Lyon, completed a season at the Théâtre de Variétés in Paris and has subsequently been filmed for French television.
His arena production of Grease played arenas all over Australia and New Zealand. Other productions abroad include As You Like It for the Shakespeare Repertory Company in Chicago; David Mamet’s Glengarry Glen Ross at the Royal Flemish Theatre in Brussels and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Song and Dance in Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide; the American comedy Alone Together, and Ben Elton's Gasping, which visited Hong Kong and Peking. His production of Defending the Caveman, starring Australian actor Mark Little, won an Olivier Award last year for Best Entertainment.
He has now directed more than a dozen West End productions. These include the award-winning Daisy Pulls it Off which ran for three years at the Globe Theatre; Lend Me a Tenor also at the Globe, and the award-winning musical The Hired Man by Melvyn Bragg and Howard Goodall, all produced by Andrew Lloyd Webber. Gilmore’s production of Grease ran for seven years at the Dominion and Cambridge Theatres, as well as touring nationally.

Other West End productions include the long-running popular hit Beyond Reasonable Doubt at the Queen's Theatre, starring Frank Finlay and Wendy Craig; Chapter Two by Neil Simon at the Gielgud Theatre, starring Tom Conti and Sharon Bless; Radio Times starring Tony Slattery and The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui starring Gryff Rhys Jones, both at the Queens Theatre; the American courtroom drama Nuts at the Whitehall Theatre, Annie Get Your Gun starring Suzi Quatro at the Aldwych Theatre, the Cole Porter revue A Swell Party at the Vaudeville Theatre, Out of the Blue at the Shaftesbury Theatre and Fatal Attraction starring Susannah York and Denis Cri at the Haymarket Theatre.
Gilmore also directed the farewell tour of the band Harvey and the Wallbangers. At the Royal National Theatre he directed Sir Anthony Quayle in Pinero's Dandy Dick. For the New Shakespeare Company he directed A Winter's Tale, and for the Chichester Festival Theatre Noël Coward's Cavalcade, with a cast of over 200.

 
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