Natasha J Barnes plays the role of Fanny Brice in Funny Girl at the Savoy Theatre for a short period whilst Sheridan Smith takes 2 - 4 weeks leave of absence from the production due to stress and exhaustion.
Barnes played the role for the completion of the run at the Menier Chocolate Factory, and again this week at the Savoy – her performance receiving plaudits from audience members and critics alike.
The producers of Funny Girl said today, “Sheridan Smith will be taking leave of absence from Funny Girl, due to stress and exhaustion.
The entire team at Funny Girl is thinking of Sheridan, and know she is getting the rest and support she needs during this very difficult and stressful time. We will all miss her enormously and send her our love and best wishes - and we are looking forward to her return to the show in due course.
Meanwhile, we are thrilled to support the wonderful Natasha J Barnes who will be taking on the role of Fanny Brice until Sheridan’s return. Natasha has been covering Sheridan in this role since the run at the Menier Chocolate Factory and has received high praise from audiences on the occasions that she has appeared. We are all certain audiences will continue to love our amazing show.”
NATASHA J BARNES
THEATRE: American Idiot (Arts Theatre); The Boy Who Fell Into a Book (Stephen Joseph Theatre); Chess (Union Theatre); Snow White (Old Vic Theatre and tour); Come Dancing (Theatre Royal
Stratford East); Lend Me a Tenor (Gielgud Theatre); I Was Looking at the Ceiling and Then I Saw the Sky (Theatre Royal Stratford East) and Spring Awakening (Lyric Hammersmith and Novello Theatre).
TELEVISION: Doc Martin and Doctors.
RADIO: BBC Radio Drama: The Day I Finished Off Charlotte Brontë, The Wonderful World of Allaetitia and Alice Through the Looking Glass.
WORKSHOPS: Peter Pan (Lyric
Theatre) and Crush (Harold Pinter).