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A Clockwork Orange show tunes to be unveiled

To mark the 50th anniversary of A Clockwork Orange next year, a stage adaptation of the demented dystopian novel will be performed using songs composed by the books’ author, Anthony Burgess.  According to the BBC, the musical will be mounted next summer in Burgess’s hometown of Manchester, England.

Dr. Andrew Biswell, director of the International Anthony Burgess Foundation in Manchester, told the BBC that the author, whose real name was John Burgess Wilson, created the script and the score in the 1980s to “assert his own ownership of the story” in the face of the controversial 1971 film adaptation by Stanley Kubrick.

In 1990, three years before Burgess’s death, the Royal Shakespeare Company mounted a production of the show, but  used new songs written by Bono and The Edge of U2. Now fans will finally get to hear the proper soundtrack for Alex and the droogs’ depraved acts of ultra-violence.

From the BBC:

“The music is really important because it establishes a tone and a mood,” Biswell said.  “It’s pretty close to West Side Story – that’s one of the obvious influences on it.”

“There’s this scene in prison, where one of the prisoners is kicked to death, which is very throwaway and jolly. That’s completely different from the corresponding episode in the film, which is very gloomy and depressing.”