In full effervescence of the musical theater in Madrid, another iconic title is premiered on the Gran Vía. The main difference compared to other productions is that this Frankenstein Youth is not a literal adaptation of Mel Brooks’s musicalcreated from his own film, but a new show designed by Esteve Ferrer and produced by LetsGo.
«Due to the success of The Addams family, the owners of the rights of the young Frankenstein gave us the freedom to make our own production », tells the director to EL MUNDO about his previous musical: also original, premiered at the Teatro Calderón in Madrid. one year and, from now on, the model to franchise around the world next to the Broadway production. “Because apart from being a fan of Mel Brooks, the film and the musicals, I think it was in my power to do a good montage, worthy and commensurate with the spirit of the comedy, ” he adds.
To recap, the 1974 film is a parody of the Hollywood horror films of the 1930s that, inspired by the characters of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, creates a delirious comedy. Brooks himself turned his iconic film into a musical, released on Broadway in 2007 . “If situations and characters are already funny in the film, in three dimensions, singing and dancing their comedy is triple,” says Ferrer. And speaking of the music, performed in its assembly by an orchestra of 10 musicians , he says: “The score fits perfectly with what you want to tell and amplifies it. It’s perfect for the show.”
With all this material, and acting as director and adapter, Ferrer gave birth to his own show, which debuts at the Philips Gran Vía Light Theater, coinciding with the bicentennial of the immortal novel. For this he did a work of introspection, in his words: “I tried to get into the skin of Mel Brooks to see how he would direct this, what more parodies could occur if he were Spanish and lived in Madrid , but always thinking not to betray his spirit “, says about this tribute. “Basically what I’ve done in the adaptation and the staging has been to take all the best of the film and remove the oldest, the most recent, the most rancid and add to my harvest what could make it more comical. I have respected the film and I have given it more value than in the Broadway and West End productions, the scenes are more developed and the characters that are anecdotal have much more packaging, “he explains.
The actor and dancer Víctor Ullate Roche stars in the film as Dr. Frederick Frankenstein, brilliant neurosurgeon and grandson of Dr. Víctor Von Frankenstein who travels to Transylvania to manage the family inheritance. Next to him, Marta Ribera will play the doctor’s fiancee, Elizabeth Benning; Cristina Llorente will be Inga, the exuberant assistant of Frederick Frankenstein; Jordi Vidal will play the famous Igor; and Albert Gràcia will get into the skin of the monster.
Regarding the scenery, Ferrer says: “I have tried to make viewers see the film in color and remind them of that black and white scent . I wanted to combine the technology with the craftsmanship of the theatrical toy so that the viewer can follow at all times the more than 16 different locations that are in the film in a theater and without moving from the chair, transported to those different rooms in a way very modern, but at the same time very classic ». To illustrate the dimensions of the show: The young Frankenstein has used more than seven tons of aluminum for the structures of the set design, during the show more than 250 costume changes are madeand they use 150 props and props.
Finally, Ferrer comments on the current moment of boiling that the musical genre lives in Madrid saying: “I’ve always wanted there to be a lot of theater, but very good because when you see something great you want to see another show . I want that in Madrid there are many musicals of great format so that people want to go and see more ». And he concludes: «This type of theater needs to make the public happy. What we ask is that they come to play and when they leave they have played».