Nigerian-born Arinze Kene set to thrill as Bob Marley’s musical heads to London’s West End

Bob Marley

A Bob Marley musical is to open in London’s West End next year.

Get Up, Stand Up! The Bob Marley Story, which is written by Billy Elliot the Musical lyricist Lee Hall, will open at the Lyric Theatre next February.

Arinze Kene

The musical, based on the life of the reggae legend, who died of cancer in 1981, aged just 36, will star Nigerian-born British actor Arinze Kene in the lead role.

Announcing the new musical, the No Woman No Cry hitmaker’s daughter Cedella Marley, told The Times: “Our father’s music means so much to so many people around the world, we’re beyond thrilled to be able to bring it to both fans and new audiences alike in a new way.

“As a family we feel that our father would be proud to know that his legacy is a source of creative inspiration and continues to bring people together.”

Speaking about his delight at playing Bob, Kene said: “It is not only an honour to be able to spread Bob Marley’s message further, but to get to be him for a little while is a lifelong dream come true. I grew up on his music and his mantra and he has been one of my role models since I was a child. I feel as if he’s in my DNA. He’s the man, I love him.”

The show’s producers added that the musical “takes direct inspiration from Marley’s visionary lyrics to tell his extraordinary personal story as an artist”.

The production will be directed by Olivier Award-winner Dominic Cooke. Punch

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