Last night was the end of an era for Jersey Boys as it closed at the Prince Edward Theatre (to make way for the West End return of Miss Saigon), but the musical has an exciting week ahead. Original Broadway cast member John Lloyd Young, who originated the role of Frankie Valli in 2006, joins the long-running musical on Saturday (15th March 2014) when it reopens at the Piccadilly Theatre.
John has won tremendous acclaim for his portrayal of Frankie, winning a Tony, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle and Theatre World Award for his performance on Broadway. He is the only American actor in history to win all four leading actor awards for a Broadway debut. John has also re-created his award-winning performance on screen in Clint Eastwood's film adaptation of Jersey Boys which is due out in June 2014.
Matt Nalton is also joining the musical as Nick Massi whilst Edd Post and Jon Boydon continue as Bob Gaudio and Tommy De Vito. Michael Watson plays Frankie at certain performances. Also in the cast at the Piccadilly Theatre are: Nicola Brazil, Sophie Carmen-Jones, Thomas Goodridge, Lucinda Gill, Matthew Hunt, Mark Isherwood, Charlotte Jeffery, Ben Jennings, Stuart King, Sandy Moffat, Sean Mulligan, Tom Senior, Emma Stephens, Matt Thorpe, Graham Vick, Ben Wheeler and Rob Wilshaw.
Today (10th March 2014) is a very important day in theatreland as nominations are announced for the 2014 Olivier Awards. Nigel Harman (currently starring in I Can’t Sing at the London Palladium) and Leigh Zimmerman (about to open in Noël Coward’s Relative Values at the Harold Pinter Theatre) will announce the nominees at 11.30am from Rosewood London. The Olivier Awards 2014 take place on Sunday 13th April at the Royal Opera House.
Also today the cast of Miss Saigon begin rehearsals for the revival which begins previews on Saturday 3rd May 2014. The cast include Jon Jon Briones as ‘The Engineer’, Eva Noblezada as ‘Kim’, Alistair Brammer as ‘Chris’, Tamsin Carroll as ‘Ellen’, Hugh Maynard as ‘John’, Rachelle Ann Go as ‘Gigi’ and Kwang-Ho Hong as ‘Thuy’. When Miss Saigon tickets went on sale last September it broke the record for the biggest single day of ticket sales in West End and Broadway history.
The new cast of Once begin performances at the Phoenix Theatre tonight. ITV Superstar finalist David Hunter (who is an understudy in the production) takes on the role of Guy for one week before Doctor Who’s Arthur Darvill takes over. He recently finished starring in the Broadway production of the Tony Award winning show.
As if today wasn’t busy enough, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels begins previews at the Savoy Theatre. Jerry Mitchell’s production comes to London fresh from two Broadway style out of town tryouts in Manchester and Aylesbury. Robert Lindsay and Rufus Hound star in the musical which premiered on Broadway in 2005 and officially opens at the Savoy on Wednesday 2nd April 2014.
Also beginning previews this week is the stage adaptation of Fatal Attraction. Performances begin tomorrow (11th March 2014) ahead of an official opening night on Tuesday 25th March 2014. Trevor Nunn directs the production which stars Natascha McElhone as Alex Forrest with Mark Bazeley as Dan Gallagher and Kristin Davis as his wife Beth. It appears the play will stand strong as a piece of theatre in its own right while not disappointing fans of the film.
Finally, this week is your last chance to see Simon Callow star in Being Shakespeare at the Harold Pinter Theatre. The play’s third West End season must end on Saturday (15th March 2014). Being Shakespeare brings to life Shakespeare’s unforgettable characters as well as the real man behind the legend.