James Dreyfus and Maureen Lipman lead the cast as Elwood P. Dowd and Veta Louise Simmons. Harvey premiered on Broadway in 1944, directed by Antoinette Perry after whom the Tony Awards are named. The play then transferred to London for the first time in 1949. The piece received strong reviews on tour and looks set to become a hot ticket in London.
The Daily Mail has revealed that Sonia Friedman (the producer behind Shakespeare In Love, The Book of Mormon and Legally Blonde) has secured the rights to bring Dreamgirls to the West End. She is apparently in talks with Broadway’s Casey Nicholaw (The Book of Mormon/Aladdin) to direct the show.
The newspaper suggests that the musical could open in the West End in 2016 or 2017, but talks are still in the very early stages. Dreamgirls opened on Broadway in 1981 and was later adapted into a hugely successful film starring Jennifer Hudson; however, the musical has never made it to the West End. Stay tuned for updates!
Claire van Kampen’s new play Farinelli And The King is transferring to the West End. Directed by John Dove, the production stars Mark Rylance (Wolf Hall/Jerusalem) as King Philippe V of Spain. The West End production will open in September 2015 for a strictly limited run at the Duke of York’s Theatre, following its run at the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse at Shakespeare's Globe. Full dates and details will be confirmed shortly.
It may be in the final weeks of its West End run, but producers of Made In Dagenham have announced plans for a London cast album. A release date is yet to be confirmed. Starring Gemma Arterton as Rita O’Grady, Made in Dagenham is directed by Rupert Goold with book by Richard Bean, music by David Arnold and lyrics by Richard Thomas. The musical closes at the Adelphi Theatre on 11th April 2015, catch it while you can.
Women On The Verge Of A Nervous Breakdown at the Playhouse Theatre has extended its run to Saturday 22nd August 2015. The musical stars Tamsin Greig and Haydn Gwynne, both of whom have been nominated for 2015 Olivier Awards for their performances in the show. David Yazbek and Jeffrey Lane’s musical comedy opened in London in January. The show is tremendous fun, providing the ultimate girls night out at the theatre.
The stage adaptation of Jacqueline Wilson’s Hetty Feather will return to the West End later this year with Phoebe Thomas reprising her acclaimed portrayal of the title role. The beautifully creative piece will run at the Duke of York’s Theatre between 6th August and 6th September as part of a major national tour. Sally Cookson directs.
In other news Sean Hughes has joined the cast of The Railway Children at the King’s Cross Theatre and Bad Jews at the Arts Theatre has kicked off its run. The West End production of Once starring Ronan Keating concludes its run at the Phoenix Theatre this weekend, making way for Bend It Like Beckham.