First Nighter: London Gets Musicalized with "Sunny Afternoon," "Made in Dagenham," "Shakespeare in Love"

November 7, 2014 8:57 PM

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London--Because jukebox musicals by definition have marquee-name value, they're not likely any time soon to stop playing--and costing much more than 25 or 50 cents a selection. The latest is Sunny Afternoon, at the Harold Pinter, which is about Ray Davies and the Kinks and, more to the point, is the only jukebox musical I know that alternates reprising hit tunes with a focus on depression and strife.

The depression is what afflicts Ray Davies (the extremely good John Dagleish) almost from the time he was a teenage fronting the Muswell Hill band that shortly became internationally famous and, rather than buoy him, plunged him further into despair.

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