Award-winning new musical to ride into West End in June

Last Updated on 27 May 2021 by Showcall Editorial Team

Gemma Sutton and Bronté Barbé will star in Jack Williams and Freya Catrin Smith’s musical, Ride, at the Garrick Theatre

Gemma Sutton and Bronté Barbé
Gemma Sutton and Bronté Barbé

New musical Ride – which was a hit at London’s Vault Festival – is transferring to the West End for two semi-staged workshop performances.

Starring Gemma Sutton and Bronté Barbé, the show is based on the real-life story of pioneering cyclist Annie Londonderry who was hailed as the first woman to ever ride a bike around the world in 1894/95.

It will be performed at the Garrick Theatre on 21 June at 3pm and 8pm. It features music and lyrics by Jack Williams, book and lyrics by Freya Catrin Smith who is co-directing it with Adam Lenson.

Ride premiered at Vault Festival in March 2020, going on to win the Vault Festival Show of the Week Award and an Offies’ Offcom Award. The title song was nominated for the 2020 Stiles & Drewe Best New Song Prize.

The creative team also includes choreographer Alfred Taylor-Gaunt, designer Libby Todd, lighting designer Sam Waddington and orchestrator Macy Schmidt. It is presented by Deux Ex Machina (DEM) Productions.

Annie Londonderry will be played by Sutton whose extensive credits include Kate Draper in Girl From the North Country at the Gielgud Theatre, Young Sally in Follies at the National Theatre, Louise in Gypsy at the Savoy Theatre, Angel in The Rink at Southwark Playhouse and Charity in Sweet Charity at the Watermill Theatre near Newbury in Berkshire.

In Ride, Londonderry is pitching her story to the New York world after returning victorious to America from cycling around the world. She is joined at the 11th hour by unwitting secretary Martha Smith to help share her unbelievable adventures. Before long, the cracks begin to show, and Annie is forced to confront a past she’d rather leave unexplored.

Martha Smith is played by Bronté Barbé whose past roles include Ado Annie in Oklahoma at Chichester Festival Theatre and Carole King in the UK tour of Beautiful: The Carole King Musical.

About Mark Ludmon 318 Articles
Mark Ludmon has been a journalist for over 20 years, specialising in theatre, hospitality and drinks after starting in regional daily newspapers. He has an MA in early modern literature and history, focusing on Elizabethan and Jacobean drama, and a theatre studies MA from Royal Central School of Speech & Drama. He is a former panellist for the Olivier Awards. He tweets at @MarkLudmon.