Your Lie in April
Venue: Harold Pinter Theatre, London
Cast: Zheng Xi Yong, Rachel Clare Chan, Dean John-Wilson, Mia Kobayashi, Lucy Park, Ernest Stroud, JoJo Meredith, Chris Fung, Eu Jin Hwang, Daniel Nardone, Ericka Posadas, Gracie Lai, Imogen Law Hing Choy and Ria Tanaka

Kosei Arima is the perfect piano prodigy dubbed the “Human Metronome” for his mechanical accuracy who has won many prestigious competitions, but he loses his ability to hear music following the death of his mother. Can his friendship with violinist Kaori Miyazono help him return to playing the music he loves?

Debuting in London’s West End after a concert at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane, Your Lie in April is here to capture the hearts of audience members once more. Based on the Manga series of the same name, this English adaptation is also running simultaneously with the Korean production. With the English Language book by Rinne B Groff, music by Frank Wildhorn and lyrics by Carly Robyn Green and Tracy Miller; this production is under the direction of Nick Winston, who also doubles as the choreographer. 

Music truly heals the soul and this musical comes at a time where the world needs to listen to the message it delivers. Having known virtually nothing about this story other than it would make me emotional, I went into this open-minded trying to ignore any sort of review because I wanted to form my own thoughts and feelings.

This show is truly gorgeous. From the stunning stage set with beautiful cherry blossoms, to the vivacious talented cast, London’s West End is in for a treat with this production. Nick Winston’s choreography is extraordinary. At one point in the show I truly felt everything was going by at the speed of light, but in the very best way. The way the fourth wall is broken truly makes you feel as though you are part of the show. This also attributes to the pacing and flow of the story which was extremely well done. The story of Kosei and Kaori is mesmerising and pure magic.

The cast is made up of wonderfully talented individuals that take you on this journey of self reflection, love and music. The two leads, Zheng Xi Yong and Mia Kobayashi, as Kosei and Kaori respectively had such sensational chemistry, they played extremely well off of each other. Mia’s vocals were angelic, and to think she is just finishing drama school this year is honestly insane. What a star. Zheng Xi Yong, I am in awe. Not only are his vocals amazing, the fact he did all the piano playing live on stage was just phenomenal. The standing ovation he received in act two was very much deserved. Both leads are sure to be going places. 

Your Lie in April reminds us that you should never give up and know that no matter what, you have a purpose. This show is inspiring, not just for aspiring musicians, but for everyone. You are reminded to dream big and reach for the stars and don’t give up until the very end of your days on earth.

It's easily one of the best musicals I have seen this year and I hope after its limited run it’s not the last the UK sees of this masterpiece. As well as the show itself being incredible, it's also made history, with all of the cast having South East Asian heritage. This is the first time the cast of a West End musical has been 100% South East Asian, and it feels like a huge step forward for diversity in musical theatre, and something to celebrate in itself.

Your Lie in April
is playing at the Harold Pinter now through 21st September. Get your tickets here - and be sure to take tissues with you.

Review by Dani

**photo credit: Craig Sugden**

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