Saturday, October 25

Michael Flatley's Lord Of The Dance - Dangerous Games transferring to Dominion Theatre

Michael Flatley's Lord Of The Dance - Dangerous Games will transfer to the Dominion Theatre in London's West End from 9th March  to 5th  September 2015 ahead of a world tour. It will follow White Christmas starring Tom Chambers and Aled Jones which runs there from  12th November and  until 3rd January 2015.

The current production stars 40 young performers, alongside Michael Flatley and former Girls Aloud star Nadine Coyle. It is based on Irish folklore and  is the classic tale of Good versus Evil expressed through  dance. Little Spirit travels through time to help the Lord of the Dance protect his people from the challenge of the Dark Lord, Don Dorcha, . As his dark power challenges the hero, the adventure turns  into a mythical universe of love, danger, and desire, created by an orchestrated combination of precision dancing, state of the art lighting and pyrotechnics.

Lord Of The Dance - Dangerous Games features new staging including holographic-effect projections, new costumes and new choreography. The production is directed and choreographed by Michael Flatley, with new music by composer Gerard Fahy and combines the best of tradition with all the excitement of new music and dance.

The production will play its final performance at the London Palladium on 25 October 2014.

Tickets for Michael Flatley's Lord Of The Dance - Dangerous Games

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Friday, October 24

Nathan Amzi, Julie Atherton, Gina Beck, Daniel Boys, Cynthia Erivo, Fra Fee, Nick Holder, Michael Matus, Jon Robyns and Jill Winternitz in West End Recast 2

West End Recast 2  is back in the West End  at the Phoenix Theatre on Sunday 9th November at 7:30pm.

Following a completely sold out premiere earlier this year, West End Recast returns with an  all new Musical  evening of  theatre madness where the Phantom might be female... Annie could be 65 years old... Grizabella might be a dog... and Sweeney Todd could be as nice as pie!

Directed by Adam Lenson with Musical Supervision & Arrangements by Daniel A. Weiss. Some of West End's biggest stars including Sabrina Aloueche, Nathan Amzi, Julie Atherton, Gina Beck, Daniel Boys, Rebecca Brewer, Cynthia Erivo, Fra Fee, Nick Holder, Cassidy Janson, Leon Lopez, Michael Matus, Jon Robyns, Katie Rowley Jones, Gareth Snook and Jill Winternitz have the unique opportunity to sing songs from roles they have always wanted to play but will NEVER be cast in presenting their unique renditions of songs from... Dreamgirls, Sweeney Todd, Gypsy, Little Shop of Horrors, Grease, Chicago, Oliver, Memphis, Matilda, RENT, Miss Saigon and many, many more.

Tickets for West End Recast 2

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Wednesday, October 22

Tour of Oh What A Lovely War announced

Wendi Peters (Corrie's Cilla Battersby-Brown) is to join the ensemble cast of Oh What A Lovely War on its 2015 national tour. The show  will return to its spiritual home - Theatre Royal Stratford East - in January before embarking on its tour to  Richmond, Malvern, Manchester, Cambridge, Bath, Torquay, Guildford, Coventry, Brighton, Leicester, Aylesbury, Birmingham, Truro, Hull and Wimbledon theatres..

Peters' recent stage credits include White Christmas at the Lowry, Salford (which she is reprising at the Dominion Theatre ), The Mystery Of Edwin Drood at the Arts Theatre and Rutherford & Son for Northern Broadsides.

Oh What A Lovely War originally premiered at Theatre Royal Stratford East in 1963 whenJoan Littlewood adapted the play from Charles Chilton's work for radio through her company Theatre Workshop. It, transferred to the West End in June 1963, opening on Broadway in 1964 and receiving four Tony Award nominations including Best Musical.

This revival opened at Theatre Royal Stratford East in February 2014 with a cast including Caroline Quentin.

Killian Donnelly, Alistair Brammer, Gerónimo Rauch, Nadim Naaman and Gina Beck MAD Christmas Album

The West End Goes MAD For Christmas is  MAD Trust’s first official Christmas album produced by Auburn Jam Records due for  release on November 30th to coincide with Trust’s annual fundraiser, A West End Christmas at St Paul’s Actor’s Church, Covent Garden.

It is compilation album of Christmas songs by new writers performed bya host of West End stars.  The track listing is:

- Together We Can Make It written by Felix Hagan peformed by
Killian Donnelly & the cast of Les Misérables
- Home - Alistair Brammer; written by Gus Gowland & Alistair Brammer
- I Love Christmas - Chloe Hart; from The Bakewell Bake Off written by The Baking Committee- -This Christmas - written & performed by Stuart Matthew Price
- Reindeer Wives - Harriet Thorpe, Christopher Howell & Sophie Isaacs; written by Anderson & Petty
-A Soldier's Christmas - Gerónimo Rauch & Nadim Naaman; written by Nadim Naaman
-Praying For You - Gina Beck; written by Alexander Bermange
 -The Little Match Girl - Janie Dee; written by Tim Connor

Nikki & Joe Davison are the husband & wife team behind Auburn Jam Music production

 CDs at £10, are available to pre-order now.

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Friday, October 17

New Musical Mrs Henderson Presents to open at Bath next Summer

Theatre Royal Bath is to  host to a try-out run of the new musical Mr Henderson Presents from 14th August 2015.

Based on Stephen Frears' 2005 film, which starred Bob Hoskins, Will Young and  Judi Dench as 'Laura Henderson', who created a vaudeville show featuring all-nude young women at the Windmill Theatre in London during "a time of great censorship," says producer Michael Harrison.

The film's producer Norma Heyman is a backing the musical alongside John Reid and Harrison with  music by George Fenton and Simon Chamberlain with lyrics by Don Black and choreography by Andrew Wright. Terry Johnson will direct  from his own adaptation of Martin Sherman's screenplay.
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Alex Gaumond to replace Rufus Hound in Dirty Rotten Scoundrels

Actor and comedian  Rufus Hound has left  the production of Dirty Rotten Scoundrels at the Savoy Theatre  with West End leading man Alex Gaumond  taking over the role of Freddy Benson from November 11th. In the meantime, an understudy will play the part. Gaumond has just finished playing Miss Trunchbull in Matilda

There is speculation about the reasons for Hound's sudden derparture. Hound (One Man Two Guv'nors, Celebrity Juice, and the winner of the recent Strictly Come Dancing Christmas Special) is now reportedly working on a film. Prior to his departure, the actor was out of the show for a week due to illness, from which he has since recovered. But today the  Mail speculates Hound's absences and now permanent exit from the show have more to do with off-stage "chemistry" between him and his co-star Robert Lindsay.

Statements from Dirty Rotten Scoundrels' producers and director "wish him all the best" as Hound goes on to "pursue other opportunities"..

A spokesperson for Hound said that the actor ‘has now completed his engagement and has started filming a movie’.

The show now stars Olivier, Tony and BAFTA award winning Robert Lindsay (Me And My Girl, Becket, Oliver!, My Family) as the conman Lawrence Jameson, competing with Freddy Benson (Alex Gaumond)  for the riches and the heart of the young impressionable heiress, Christine Colgate played by Katherine Kingsley (Singin' in the Rain), who was just nominated for an Olivier Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role for Michael Grandage's A Midsummer Night's Dream. Bonnie Langford  plays Muriel Eubanks, a glamorous divorcee looking for love in Beaumont-sur-Mer on the French Riviera and Gary Wilmot  plays Andre Thibault, Beaumont-sur-Mer's Chief of Police.




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Tuesday, October 14

Downton Abbey Christmas Album featuring Julian Ovenden

The cast of Downton Abbey are  to release a double  Christmas album next month featuring Elizabeth McGovern and Julian Ovenden. Jim Carter, who plays butler Charles Carson, performs a spoken word version of T'was The Night Before Christmas.

It will feature a festive version of the period drama's theme tune along with choral versions of traditional hymns and carols.

Elizabeth McGovern, plays Cora Countess of  Graham and Julian Ovenden, who plays Charles Blake, will be the most featured on the album because they both have musical backgrounds. McGovern fronts a folk band called Sandie and the Hotheads while Ovenden is a well known and established  musical theatre star and singer  who has released albums. On the 45-track Downton album McGovern¡s  performances include It Came Upon A Midnight Clear, and she performs a duet  of The First Noe lwith Ovenden

Christmas at Downton Abbey is due for release on 10th November.  You can pre-order your copy here

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Wednesday, October 8

Bend it Like Beckham to Replace Once at the Phoenix?

The  news today that Once the Musical is to close at the Phoenix Theatre at the end of Ronan Keating's engagement on 21st March, gives strength to the rumour is that Bend It Like Beckham the Musical is taking its place.

Based on the 2002 film starring Keira Knightley, the musical has David Beckham's blessing and will be directed by Gurinder Chadha, who also directed the film, with  music and lyrics by Howard Goodall and Charles Hart.

The film centres around 18-year-old daughter of Punjabi Sikhs in London. Infatuated with football but forbidden to play by her parents, she joins a local women's team, which makes its way to the top of the league.

Accordin to Baz Bamigboye a developmental workshop was held last   October with  Samantha Barks playing 'Jules' ( portrayed by Keira Knightley in the 2002 movie) alongside Tara Divina as 'Jess' (originated by Parminder Nagra on screen) in the starring role. Frances Ruffelle, Shobna Gulati, Preeya Kalidas, Jamie Muscato, and Richard Fleeshman were also part of various workshops. There hae also been number of rehearsed readings and workshops  including a big one in May this year at the Dominion Theatre which Andrew Lloyd Webber and theatre critic Mark Shenton attended.

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