Stephen Sondheim falls at his home; lunchtime opening event to be delayed

Posted on 8 January 2020

The Sondheim Theatre in London  home to Les Miserables  has been forced to delay its lunchtime opening event after it's been reported that Stephen Sondheim, 89, fell in his Connecticut home, leaving him "temporarily incapacitated."

Official Sondheim Theatre lunchtime opening event delayed

It has been announced by producer Cameron Mackintosh that Stephen Sondheim has suffered a fall. He was due to attend the lunchtime opening event on 14 January 2020 at the former Queen's Theatre, which was renamed after him last summer whilst it underwent extensive refurbishment and modernisation. The American composer and lyricist also has another venue named after him in New York City — Broadway's Stephen Sondheim Theatre (formerly known as Henry Miller's Theatre).

The event is expected to be rescheduled at a later date with Stephen Sondheim expected to fully recover from his fall in due time, but definitely before his 90th birthday on 22 March 2020. 

Les Miserables will continue with its opening night gala next week as planned.

What Mackintosh and Sondheim had to say about the fall

Cameron Mackintosh said in a statement: "I am very sorry to have to let you know that we have just been informed that Stephen Sondheim suffered a fall a few days ago at his Connecticut home where he tore a ligament which has seriously compromised his immediate mobility. As a consequence, we have had to take the disappointing decision to postpone the official opening of the Sondheim Theatre (where Les Misérables is playing) on the 14th of January 2020 which Stephen was coming over for from New York.

"It is likely to be a few months before Stephen will be fit enough to travel to England again to celebrate the new theatre bearing his name. Though temporarily incapacitated, Steve is very much still here in feisty frustrated spirit with West Side Story and Company opening imminently on Broadway and the Sondheim Theatre and Sunday in the Park With George opening in London."

Stephen Sondheim also issued a comment, adding: "I would do nearly anything for Cameron. But to stand side by side with him on a West End stage holding onto a stroller is not something I will let him enjoy teasing me about. From the early reports of friends and the mouth-watering photos I have seen, Les Miz will have to run another 35 years for him to break even on what he has spent creating such an extravagantly beautiful new theatre out of an old building.

"As I recover from my tumble, I'm impatient to throw away my cane, grab my hat and head across the Pond as soon as I can to see on which cherub Cameron has tattooed my initials. I am, to put it mildly, chuffed to have my name on a theatre in the West End I have loved visiting ever since my first trip to London almost seventy years ago. London has always been a second home to me personally and professionally. On this occasion, Cameron has even offered to lend me a flock of his sheep so I can exercise my right as a Freeman of the City to bring them across London Bridge without charge."

Les Miserables Sondheim Theatre tickets available from £18 and up!

The longest-running West End musical of all time is back and showing at the newly renamed Sondheim Theatre. Be sure to get your hands on tickets to Les Miserables in London early to secure the best seats in the house! Les Mis is now booking until 17 October 2020 in an open-ended run.

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Nicholas Ephram Ryan Daniels

By Nicholas Ephram Ryan Daniels

Ephram is a jack of all trades and enjoys attending theatre, classical music concerts and the opera.