Friday, 18 December 2015

REVIEW: Sleeping Beauty at the New Victoria Theatre in Woking, Starring Katie Price

There is hardly a soul out there unfamiliar with the enchanting tale of Sleeping Beauty, but for the few who are unfamiliar with the story, here's a very quick summary. The classic tale goes that a King and Queen were once upon a time blessed with the most beautiful baby girl in all the kingdoms, whom they named Aurora. To celebrate her birth, they invite all the fairies of the land to share their blessings, but one fairy is forgotten - the evil fairy, Maleficent. In a fit of rage, she curses the child saying that before she turns 18, she will prick her finger upon a spinning wheel, and die. The good 'lilac' fairy then uses her blessing to amend the curse so instead of dying, Aurora will fall into a sleep of 100 years, and can then be awoken by true love's first kiss. Throw in a handsome prince, and ta-da - you've got yourself the timeless fairy-tale we all love. 

Thursday, 10 December 2015

BILLY ELLIOT to close in the West End after 4,600 performances

Universal Stage Productions, Working Title Films and Old Vic Productions today (10 December 2015) announce that after 4,600 performances, due to the theatre's previously announced refurbishment programme, the multi award-winning West End production of Billy Elliot the Musical will play its final performance at the Victoria Palace Theatre on 9 April 2016 as the production celebrates its eleventh birthday. The show has been seen to date by over 5.25 million people in London and nearly 11 million people worldwide, has grossed over $800 million worldwide and is the winner of over 80 theatre awards internationally.

In June this year tickets went on sale for the first UK and Ireland tour of Billy Elliot the Musicalopening at the Theatre Royal Plymouth in February 2016 when the touring and West End productions will be playing concurrently.  Further dates - Sunderland, Bradford, Cardiff, Dublin, Edinburgh, Bristol, Manchester, Southampton and Birmingham - have subsequently been announced, with the tour currently booking to May 2017.  The first Japanese language production will open at the Akasaka ACT Theater in Tokyo in 2017.

Thursday, 3 December 2015

FIRST LOOK: Funny Girl at the Menier Chocolate Factory starring Sheridan Smith

Double Olivier Award winner Sheridan Smith will return to London’s West End next year when the Menier Chocolate Factory production of Funny Girl transfers to the Savoy Theatre in April for a 12-week season.
The production, which also stars Gone With The Wind and From Here To Eternity star Darius Campbell, runs at the hit-making off-West End theatre from 20 November to 5 March, though tickets for that run are already sold out.
Funny Girl, which has not been staged in the West End since its premiere in the 60s, is the musical that shot Barbra Streisand to fame. It tells the story of Fanny Brice, who rose from being a music hall singer to becoming one of Broadway’s biggest stars. Though on stage she was loved, her off stage life was far more turbulent.
The new production is directed by Broadway’s Mayer and features a book revised from Isobel Lennart’s original by Kinky Boots writer Harvey Fierstein.
Producer Sonia Friedman commented: “2016 will mark the 50th anniversary of the original London production of Funny Girl. It's enormously exciting to be bringing this legendary musical back to the West End for the first time since 1966, in a brand new production starring the incredible Sheridan Smith.”
Funny Girl runs at the Savoy Theatre from 9 April to 2 July. 

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