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Sheridan Smith to Reprise Role of Cilla Black in 2020 UK Tour of Cilla The Musical

After much speculation, producers have confirmed that Sheridan Smith will revisit her award-wining portrayal of the late Cilla Black to star in Bill Kenwright’s stage production, Cilla The Musical, written by BAFTA award-winning writer Jeff Pope

The musical will open at the Liverpool Empire for a 4 week residency commencing 23rd September 2020, ahead of a UK tour to AylesburyEdinburghBirmingham and Leeds.

Sheridan wowed fans and critics alike with her portrayal of the nation’s favorite singer and TV personality in Jeff Pope’s BAFTA award-winning ITV series.  “Mesmerising… a joy to watch… she really does embody the young Cilla perfectly…” (Independent).  Her acclaimed portrayal of the British icon won Sheridan both a 2015 National TV Award and a 2015 TV Choice Award, and went on to see her nominated for a BAFTA (2015) and a second international EMMY Award (2015).

Hailed “The Greatest Theatre Star of her Generation” by The Evening Standard and with nearly two decades of television, film and theatre success, Sheridan Smith is widely considered Britain’s favourite actress.  After starting a career in such sitcoms as The Royle Family, Two Pints of Lager, Gavin & Stacey and Benidorm, she starred in Jonathan Creek (2013) and went on to receive acclaim for a succession of television dramas such as Mrs Biggs (2012), Cilla (2014), The C Word (2015), Black Work (2015) and The Moorside (2017).  Sheridan was named Best Actress at the 2013 BAFTA TV Awards for Mrs. Biggs

Sheridan Smith reprise role of Cilla Black in the 2020 UK Tour of Cilla The Musical

Theatre credits include her first Olivier Award nomination for Little Shop of Horrors at the Menier Chocolate Factory and her first Olivier Award and WhatsOnStage Award for her role as Elle Woods in Legally Blonde.  Following this, she won an Olivier Award and an Evening Standard Theatre Award for her role of Doris in Flare Path. Ibsen’s Hedda Gabler at The Old Vic gave her another WhatsOnStage Best Actress Award.  She also enjoyed a hugely celebrated run in the West End as Fanny Bryce in Funny Girl

Cilla The Musical is a spectacular and heart-warming musical adaptation of the TV series. The 2017 debut tour was met with five-star reviews and standing ovations up and down the UK and was nominated Best New Musical in the WhatsOnStage Awards.

The story follows the extraordinary life of an ordinary teenage girl from Liverpool, Priscilla White, and her rocky, yet incredible, rise to fame. By the age of just 25 she was recognized as international singing star Cilla Black. By 30 she had become Britain’s favorite television entertainer headlining series of Blind DateSurprise Surprise and many more.  The musical score features the ultimate soundtrack to the 60’s including Cilla’s greatest hits Anyone Who Had a Heart, Alfie and Something Tells Me, alongside a backdrop of the legendary “Liverpool Sound”.

Jeff Pope is an award-winning writer for film and television. Film credits include Pierrepoint: The Last Hangman (Timothy Spall); Essex Boys (Sean Bean, Tom Wilkinson); Philomena (Judi Dench, Steve Coogan) for which Jeff picked up a Golden Globe, BIFA and London Critics Circle nominations and BAFTA and Venice Film Festival wins for Best Adapted Screenplay and most recently the critically acclaimed Stan & Ollie (Steve Coogan, John C. Reilly).

TV work includes the BAFTA winning ITV drama Mrs Biggs (starring Sheridan Smith), the multi-award winning Dirty, Filthy LoveCilla (starring Sheridan Smith) and Lucan (starring Rory Kinnear). As a producer, Jeff has helmed a number of award-winning dramas including Mo, a bio-pic based on the life of politician Mo Mowlam, the BAFTA winning See No Evil – The Moors MurdersAppropriate Adult (Starring Dominic West and Emily Watson), which earned five BAFTA awards; as well as a Golden Globe nomination in the acclaimed BBC One drama The Moorside and more recently A Confession (starring Martin Freeman).

Cilla 2020 UK Tour Dates

Liverpool, Empire Theatre Wed 23 Sep 2020 – Sat 17 Oct 2020  atgtickets.com/Liverpool0844 871 3017
Aylesbury, Waterside TheatreMon 19 Oct 2020 – Sat 24 Oct 2020 atgtickets.com/Aylesbury0844 871 7607
Edinburgh, Playhouse TheatreMon 26 Oct 2020 – Sat 31 Oct 2020 atgtickets.com/Edinburgh0844 871 3014
Birmingham, The Alexandra TheatreMon 02 Nov 2020 – Sat 07 Nov 2020 atgtickets.com/Birmingham0844 871 3011
Leeds, Grand TheatreMon 09 Nov 2020 – Sat 21 Nov 2020leedsgrandtheatre.com0844 848 2700
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Andrew Lloyd Webber’s School of Rock – The Musical To Tour the UK and Ireland in 2021

School of Rock – The Musical, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s smash hit, award-winning West End show, will go on a major UK Tour in 2021, opening at the Birmingham Alexandra Theatre on Saturday 13 February 2021.

Based on the hilarious hit movie, this new musical follows Dewey Finn, a failed, wannabe rock star who decides to earn a few extra bucks by posing as a substitute teacher at a prestigious prep school. There he turns a class of straight-A students into a guitar-shredding, bass-slapping, mind-blowing rock band – sensationally performed live by the production’s young actors every night with roof-raising energy!

While teaching these pint-sized prodigies what it means to truly rock, Dewey falls for the school’s beautiful, but uptight headmistress, helping her rediscover the wild child within.

Featuring 14 new songs from Andrew Lloyd Webber and all the original songs from the movie, this high-octane smash delivers face-melting guitar riffs and touching romance in equally awesome doses.

The production opened at the New London Theatre (now the Gillian Lynne Theatre) in November 2016 to 5-star reviews and widespread critical acclaim. It went on to win the Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in Music. The Broadway production recently concluded its run at the Winter Garden Theatre with a US national touring production continuing. An Australian production opened at Her Majesty’s Theatre in Melbourne last October.

School of Rock – The Musical features new music written by Andrew Lloyd Webber with lyrics by Glenn Slater (The Little Mermaid, Sister Act) and a book by Julian Fellowes. It is directed by Laurence Connor (Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, London Palladium 2019) with choreography by JoAnn M. Hunter, set and costume designs by Anna Louizos, lighting design by Natasha Katz, sound design by Mick Potter, music supervision by John Rigby with Matt Smith as musical director.

Andrew Lloyd Webber is the composer of some of the world’s best known musicals including Cats, Evita, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Jesus Christ Superstar, The Phantom of the Opera (which this year celebrates its 30th anniversary) and Sunset Boulevard.  In New York, School of Rock – The Musical, a stage version of the movie, is currently running alongside Cats and Phantom of the Opera, equalling Lloyd Webber’s previous record of three shows running simultaneously on Broadway.

His awards, both as composer and producer, include seven Tonys, seven Oliviers, a Golden Globe, an Oscar, the Praemium Imperiale, the Richard Rodgers Award for Excellence in Musical Theatre, a BASCA Fellowship, the Kennedy Center Honor and a Grammy for Best Contemporary Classical Composition for Requiem, his setting of the Latin Requiem mass which contains one of his best known compositions, Pie Jesu.  He owns seven London theatres including the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, the New London Theatre and the London Palladium.  He was knighted by Her Majesty The Queen in 1992 and created an honorary member of the House of Lords in 1997.  He is passionate about the importance of music in education and the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation has become one of Britain’s leading charities supporting the arts and music.

School of Rock has a book by Julian Fellowes, for which he received a Tony nomination. Julian the creator, writer and executive producer of the worldwide hit TV series Downton Abbey, which has received 69 Emmy Award nominations, winning 15, including two awards for Fellowes.

Casting for the UK Touring production is to be announced.