Nine is written by Maury Yeston and Arthur Kopit and is based on the Italian film maker Federico Fellini’s semi-autobiographical film ’8 1/2′. The show concerns the film director Guido Contini who is facing a midlife crisis as he struggles to put together his latest film. Set in 1960s Venice, the show had a spectacular original production on Broadway and has since been made into a movie starring Antonio Banderas.


Maury Yeston

Maury Yeston

Arthur Kopit & Mario Fratti

Federico Fellini's semi-autobiographical film 8½

Michel Stuart, Harvey Klaris & Roger Berlind

Tommy Tune

Tommy Tune & Thommie Walsh

Nine Original Broadway

Original Broadway Production

46th Street Theatre - Opened 9 May 1982, closed 1 Jan 1970, 729 performances

Cast: Raul Julia, Karen Akers, Liliane Montevecchi, Anita Morris, Shelly Burch, Camille Saviola, Kathi Moss, Cameron Johann, and Taina Elg

Nine London

Festival Hall Production

Royal Festival Hall - Opened 7 Jun 1992, closed 1 Jan 1970

Cast: Raul Julia, Karen Akers, Liliane Montevecchi, Anita Morris, Shelly Burch, Camille Saviola, Kathi Moss, Cameron Johann, and Taina Elg

Nine Donmar

Donmar Warehouse Production

Donmar Warehouse - Opened 12 Dec 1996, closed 1 Mar 1996

Nine Broadway Revival

Broadway Revival

Eugene O'Neill - Opened 10 Apr 2003, closed 1 Jan 1970, 283 performances

What was your favourite production? Add your thoughts in the comments box


The show opens as Guido Contini, the famous Italian film director turns forty and faces a mid-life crisis. He is struggling to write the script for his next film and his marriage is on the verge of breaking down due to his lack of attention. After being married to film star Luisa del Forno, her words are drowned out by those of the other women in his life and his past and current lovers who have created the division in his marriage.

The pair retire away from the public eye to a Spa town but are soon followed by the press. Guido tells Luisa about his next project and she is not impressed. His mistress arrives in Venice and tempts him with a naughty phone call as he struggles to find a topic on which he can successfully write about. His producer Liliane La Fleur adds pressure and tells him he needs to write a musical, reminicing about her days at the Folies Bergeres. Luisa laments her husband’s job and the tension it creates in their marriage.

Through a flashback we see Guido’s relationship with his mother who bathed him as a child. He watches his young self sneak out of his catholic school to the beach where he meets with Saraghina the prostitute who teaches him all about love. She teaches him a dance and we see how the punnishment from the nuns and rejection from his mother affected him growing up. As the young Guido runs back to the beach, Saraghina has vanished.

In the present day Guido is again on the beach where he meets Claudia, his usual muse who he asks for help with his latest film. She turns down the role and he is upset, not noticing that she loves him too and as she prepares to leave him he is stuck with inspiration. He decides to make the movie with every woman in his life.

The film becomes an improvised collision between real life and art as the women on set declare their feelings and issues, and Guido struggles to contain everyone together. Luisa is captured in a scene of ultimate desolation and their marriage ends in shatters. Guido is left alone where he contemplates suicide, lamenting the fact that he can’t make the movie. As he prepares to shoot himself, he sees his 9 year old self who tells him it is time to move on. The women return this time to let him go, apart from Luisa and he finally realises the aching void left by the only woman he ever loved.


Act I

  • Overture Delle Donne” – Company
  • “Not Since Chaplin” – Company
  • “Guido’s Song” – Guido
  • “Coda di Guido” – Company
  • “The Germans at the Spa” – Maddelena, Italians, Germans
  • “My Husband Makes Movies” – Luisa
  • “A Call From the Vatican” – Carla
  • “Only With You” – Guido
  • “The Script/Folies Bergeres” – Lilli, Stephanie, Company
  • “Nine” – Mamma, Company
  • “Ti Voglio Bene/Be Italian” – Saraghina, Boys, Company
  • “The Bells of St. Sebastian” – Guido, Boys, Company
Act II
  • “A Man Like You/Unusual Way/Duet” – Claudia, Guido
  • “The Grand Canal” (Every Girl in Venice/Amor/Only You/Finale) – Guido, Company
  • “Simple” – Carla
  • “Be On Your Own” – Luisa
  • “I Can’t Make This Movie” – Guido
  • “Getting Tall” – Young Guido
  • “Nine/Long Ago/Nine” (Reprise) – Guido

1982 Tony Awards: Best Musical, Best Original Score, Best Performance by a Featured Actress, Best Direction, Best Costume Design

1982 Drama Desk: Outstanding Musical Production, Outstanding Featured Actress, Outstanding Director, Outstanding Lyrics, Outstanding Music, Outstanding Costume Design, Outstanding Lighting Design.

2003 Tony Award: Best Revival, Best Featured Actress in a Musical


UK: Samuel French

USA: Samuel French


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