Sunny Afternoon is the hit West End musical, originally premiering at the Hampstead Theatre before transferring to London’s Harold Pinter Theatre for an extensive run. Winning the sought-after 2015 Olivier Award for Best New Musical, Sunny Afternoon features a huge back catalogue of some of The Kinks’ greatest hits, including “Lola”, “Waterloo Sunset” and “Dedicated Follower of Fashion”. Written by Joe Penhall, with music from Ray Davies, the musical documents brothers Ray and Dave Davies as they encounter the highs and lows on the way to becoming one of Britain’s best bands of the 1960’s.
Sonia Friedman Productions
Original London Production
Harold Pinter Theatre - Opened 28 Oct 2014, closed 29 Oct 2016
Cast: John Dagleish (Ray Davies), George Maguire (Dave Davies), Ned Derrington (Pete Quaife), Adam Sopp (Mick Avory), Vince Leigh (Larry Page), Ben Caplan (Eddie Kassner), Lillie Flynn (Rasa), Dominic Tighe (Robert Wace), Tam Williams (Greenville Collins), Ashley Campbell (Gregory Piven), Philip Bird (Mr Davies/Allen Klein), Elizabeth Hill (Mrs Davies/Marsha) Replacements: Danny Horn (Ray), Oliver Hoare (Dave), Tom Whitelock (Pete), Damien Walsh (Mick), Christopher Brandon (Larry), Jason Baughan (Eddie), Megan Leigh Mason (Rasa), Gabriel Vick (Robert), Charlie Tighe (Greenville)
UK Tour (2016)
UK Tour - Opened 19 Aug 2016
Cast: Ryan O’Donnell (Ray Davies), Mark Newnham (Dave Davies), Garmon Rhys (Pete Quaife), Andrew Gallo (Mick Avory), Jayne Ashley, Victoria Anderson, Nathanael Campbell, Marcelo Cervone, Tomm Coles, Deryn Edwards, Sophie Leigh Griffin, Sam Haywood, James Hudson, Richard Hurst, Cleo Jaeger, James Lorcan, Joseph Richardson, Robert Took, Alex Wadham, Libby Watts, Michael Warburton, Lucy Wilkerson, Lisa Wright
What was your favourite production? Add your thoughts in the comments box
Ray Davies brings the hit music from British band The Kinks to the stage, following the true story of their rise to fame.
Add your own Twitter style synopsis (140 characters only!) in the comments box
Set in London, during the battle of classes in a conservative 50s and upcoming, liberal 60s, Sunny Afternoon follows the true story of The Kinks and their rise to fame. Act I opens with the band featuring as backing for Robert Wace as The Ravens. Wace sings a toned-down version of “You Still Want Me”, which Dave Davies soon tires off and the band start their own rock riff with “I Gotta Move”.
A stunt move, the band are soon snapped and signed, with their manager convincing them to change their name to something more sexy and memorable, eventually coming up with The Kinks. They are redesigned, refashioned and given an image that reflects their upbringing in Muswell Hill. Negotiating contracts, Ray doesn’t understand why much of his money is handed out to agents and managers when it’s him that’s writing the songs.
They begin to grow a firm fan-base and also begin to attract many female fans, and Ray meets Rasa after a particularly rollicking concert. As the musical continues, Ray struggles to cope in a world where money is the precedent and Dave spirals rapidly out of control, drinking a lot and trashing hotels. Rasa becomes pregnant and the pair marry, but their relationship is jeopardised by Ray Davies’ wayward mind. Soon, the band go from creating a unique sound to arguing through riotous gigs, with Dave Davies and Pete Quaife regularly falling out.
Soon, Ray and Rasa’s relationship is in tatters, Ray and Dave have completely fallen out and Pete wants to leave the band. Woven throughout the musical are The Kinks’ hit songs, as well as the Davies’ rivalry, management issues, Ray’s marriage to Rasa and their being banned from America due to a dispute with the musicians’ union. Based on the real story of The Kinks, Sunny Afternoon discovers how the band rose to, and almost fell from, fame.
- “You Still Want Me” – Robert Wace and The Ravens
- “I Gotta Move/You Really Got Me” – Ray Davies, Dave Davies and Company
- “Just Can’t Go to Sleep” – Ray and Dave
- “Denmark Street” – Robert, Greenville Collins, Eddie Kassner, Larry Page and Company
- “A Well Respected Man” – Ray, Robert and Greenville
- “Dead End Street” – Mr and Mrs Davies and Company
- “Dedicated Follower of Fashion” – Ray, Dave and Company
- “You Really Got Me”- The Kinks
- “(This Time Tomorrow into) Set Me Free” – The Kinks
- “Till the End of the Day” – Dave and Company
- “This Strange Effect” – Ray and Rasa
- “Stop Your Sobbing” – Ray and Company
- “This is Where I Belong” – Ray and Dave
- “Where Have All the Good Times Gone/All Day and All of the Night” – The Kinks
- “This Time Tomorrow” – Ray and Company
- “Maximum Consumption” – Ray
- “Sitting in My Hotel” – Ray
- “I Go to Sleep” – Rasa
- “I’m Not Like Everybody Else” – The Kinks
- “Too Much on My Mind/Tired of Waiting for You” – Ray, Rasa and Company
- “The Moneygoround” – Ray, Dave and Mick Avory
- “Sunny Afternoon” – Ray and Company
- “A Rock ‘n’ Roll Fantasy” – Ray, Pete Quaife, Dave, Mick, Rasa and Company
- “Days” – Robert, Greenville, Dave, Ray and Mick
- “A Long Way from Home” – Ray and Dave
- “Waterloo Sunset” – Ray and Company
- “Lola” – Ray, Dave and Company
2015 Olivier Awards: Best New Musical, Best Actor in a Musical (John Dagleish), Best Actor in a Supporting Role in a Musical (George Maguire), Outstanding Achievement in Music (Ray Davies)