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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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Singin’ in the Rain to Embark on 2021 UK Tour

Michael Harrison and Jonathan Church are today delighted to announce that Chichester Festival Theatre’s Olivier Award-nominated production of Singin’ in the Rain will embark on a major UK and Ireland tour in 2021, following a strictly limited five-week season at Sadler’s Wells this Summer. Singin’ In The Rain opens at Marlowe Theatre, Canterbury on Thursday 21 January 2021.

Singin’ in the Rain also reunites the original director Jonathan Church with choreographer Andrew Wright.

This production of Singin’ in the Rain opened at Chichester Festival Theatre and extended due to unprecedented public demand, before a transfer to London which received huge critical acclaim and four Olivier Award nominations.

It played to more than 750,000 people…. some leaving the theatre a little wetter than when they arrived! In fact the iconic rain scenes:

  • Use 6k litres of water, equivalent to 5 tonnes (here’s a list of things which also weigh 5 tonnes: 2 Rhinos, 11 Grand Pianos or 30 Panda Bears!)
  • Uses over 100 metres of heavy duty rubber hose
  • Takes 15 minutes to drain. Afterwards it is recovered, it is then re-cycled, cleaned and used again
  • Heats the water to 37 degrees for performer comfort!

Singin’ in the Rain features songs by Nacio Herb Brown and Arthur Freed, including Make ‘em Laugh, Good Morning, Moses Supposes and Singin’ in the Rain. Original screenplay and adaptations are by Betty Comden and Adolph Green. Reuniting the original Chichester production team, Singin’ in the Rain will be directed by Jonathan Church, with Olivier Award-nominated choreography by Andrew Wright. The production is designed by Simon Higlett, with lighting by Tim Mitchell.

The stage production of Singin’ in the Rain is based on the classic Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer film, regularly voted the most popular film musical of all time.

After Sadler’s WellsSingin’ in the Rain will return to Japan. This will be the third season the production has played in the country. Singin’ in the Rain will play in Tokyo, from the end of September 2020, ahead of the UK tour.

Michael Harrison Entertainment and Jonathan Church Productions present the Chichester Festival Theatre and Stage Entertainment Production of Singin’ in the Rain.

SINGIN’ IN THE RAIN 2021 TOUR DATES

Thursday 21– Sat 30 JanuaryThe Marlowe Theatre, Canterbury Box Office: 01227 787787www.marlowetheatre.comGeneral On Sale Monday 23 March
Tues 9- Sat 13 FebruaryTheatre Royal, NewcastleBox Office: 08448 11 21 21www.theatreroyal.co.ukGeneral On Sale Friday 13 March
Tues 9– Sat 13 MarchRoyal Concert Hall, NottinghamBox Office: 0115 989 5555www.trch.co.ukGeneral On Sale Friday 13 March
Tues 16– Sat 20 MarchLeeds Grand Theatre Box Office: 0844 848 2700www.leedsgrandtheatre.comGeneral On Sale Wednesday 29 April
Tues 23– Sat 27 MarchFestival Theatre, EdinburghBox Office: 0131 529 6000www.capitaltheatres.com/your-visit/festival-theatreGeneral On Sale Monday 27 April
Tues 30 March – Sat 3 AprilCliffs Pavilion, Southend Box Office: 01702 351135www.thecliffspavilion.co.ukGeneral On Sale Friday 20 March
Tues 6 – Sat 10 AprilBirmingham HippodromeBox Office: 0844 338 5000www.birminghamhippodrome.comGeneral On Sale Monday 27 April
Tues 20 – Sat 24 AprilWales Millennium Centre Box Office: 029 2063 6464www.wmc.org.ukGeneral On Sale Monday 23 March
Tues 27 April – Sat 1 MayLyceum Theatre, Sheffield Box Office: 0114 249 6000www.sheffieldtheatres.co.ukGeneral On Sale Soon
Tues 11– Sat 15 MayHis Majesty’s AberdeenBox Office: 0844 871 7646www.aberdeenperformingarts.com/his-majestys-theatreGeneral On Sale Friday 20 March
Tues 18 – Sat 22 MayMayflower Theatre, SouthamptonBox Office: 023 8071 1811www.mayflower.org.ukOn Sale Now
Tues 8 – Sat 12 JuneAlhambra Theatre, BradfordBox Office: 01274 432 000www.bradford-theatres.co.ukGeneral On Sale Soon
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Darren Day and Gareth Gates to star in Footloose UK Tour

Selladoor Productions have announced that musical theatre favourite Darren Day will join the cast of Footloose The Musical as Reverend Moore in the brand-new UK Tour opening at the New Wimbledon Theatre on the 24 April.  Following two critically acclaimed tours and due to huge popular demand an additional 11 venues have today been added to the tour schedule (for full details visit www.footloose-musical.com). 


Darren will join Gareth Gates* on stage Geri Allen, Holly Ashton, Jess Barker, Ben Barrow, Alex Fobbester, Josh Hawkins, Lucy Ireland, Evie Rose Lane, Ben Mabberley, Daniel Miles, Tom Mussell, Samantha Richards, Dionne Ward Anderson and Anna Westlake.

Darren Day’s first starring theatre role was in Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat with an extensive career in the West End including Summer Holiday, Copacabana and Grease.   Tours include Alfie, Carousel, Great Expectations, Godspell, The Rocky Horror Show, We Will Rock You and many more – most recently Mame, Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, Bob in Rita Sue and Bob Too and new musical Bumblescratch at the Adelphi Theatre.

Darren’s television career has included roles in  Sky’s StellaHollyoaks and Holby City, as well as many presenting appearances. Darren was a finalist in the 2016 series of Celebrity Big Brother. Recent feature films include White Island, Name of the Game, Rudy and Demon Eye as well as The Krays – Dead Man Walking.

Darren is also an established recording artist and has made guest appearances as a singer on a wide range of television shows.

“I’m truly happy and excited to be a part of this brilliant production. I was a teenager in the 80’s, which is such an impressionable age for movies and music. This is one of the most iconic films and soundtracks from my teenage years.  I can remember hearing Footloose on the radio for the first time and thinking… what a tune! It’s been a while since I went out on tour with a musical and am very much looking forward to going back to my musical theatre roots around the UK. See you all in the Spring!”

Darren Day

City boy Ren thinks life is bad enough when he’s forced to move to a rural backwater in America. But his world comes to a standstill when he arrives at Bomont to find dancing and rock music are banned. Taking matters into his own hands, soon Ren has all hell breaking loose and the whole town on its feet.

Based on the 1980s screen sensation which took the world by storm, Footloose The Musical sizzles with spirit, fun and the best in UK musical talent. With cutting edge modern choreography, you’ll enjoy classic 80s hits including Holding Out for a Hero, Almost Paradise, Let’s Hear It For The Boy and of course the unforgettable title track Footloose.

Footloose The Musical will be presented by Selladoor Productions and Runaway Entertainment, and will be directed by Racky Plews, with choreography from Matt Cole, musical supervision by Mark Crossland and design by Sara Perks with lighting design from Chris Davey and sound design from Chris Whybrow.

Everybody cut loose for a night of dazzling excitement music and dancing!

Tickets are on sale now! #EverybodyCutLoose

*Please note Gareth Gates will perform on the tour until 26 September 2020 but will not be performing on 24th and 25th March/ 29th – 6th April / 5th – 9th May / 13th – 17th May / 6th – 12th June / 10th – 15th August

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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.

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UK tour of PRISCILLA, QUEEN OF THE DESERT starring Joe McFadden extends

Mark Goucher and first-time producer Jason Donovan have announced that their brand-new production of the much-loved glittering hit musical Priscilla, Queen of the Desert the Musical will extend its UK tour dates through to 2020. The show, which was announced last year, and will star Strictly Come Dancing winner Joe McFadden, will tour the UK and Ireland from September 2019. It marks Donovan’s first time as a producer, having performed in the cast of the original West End production and two subsequent UK tours. The producing team is completed by Gavin Kalin and Matthew GalePriscilla, Queen of the Desert the Musical will preview in Dartford from 5 September 2019.


Joe McFadden (Tick/Mitzi), Nick Hayes (Adam/Felicia) and Miles Western (Bernadette). Photo credit Darren Bell

Full tour dates include: Dartford; Bradford; Rhyl; Milton Keynes; Wimbledon; Malvern; Blackpool; Leicester; Edinburgh; Liverpool; Inverness; Manchester; Brighton; Southampton; Plymouth; Nottingham; Dublin; Cambridge; Newcastle; Southend; Sheffield; Carlisle; Woking; Ipswich; Hull; Oxford; Birmingham; Northampton; Glasgow; Cardiff; Bristol. 

Full casting for the production has also been announced. Previously announced Joe McFadden will play Tick/Mitzi, Laurence Olivier Award Winner Miles Western will take on the role as Bernadette and Nick Hayes will play Adam/Felicia. They are joined by Daniel Fletcher (Bob), Miranda Wilford (Marion), Kevin Yates (Miss Understanding), Jacqui Sanchez (Cynthia). The Divas will be played by Nikki Bentley, Claudia Kariuki, Rosie Glossop and the cast is completed by Jak Allen-AndersonNatalie ChuaEmma CrossleyJordan CunninghamMartin HardingJustin-Lee JonesNell Martin and Edwin Ray.

The iconic hit musical has more glitter than ever before, featuring a dazzling array of stunning costumes, fabulous feathers and a non-stop parade of dance-floor classics including It’s Raining MenI Will SurviveI Love The NightlifeFinally and many more.

Based on the Oscar-winning film, PRISCILLA is the hilarious adventure of three friends who hop aboard a battered old bus bound for Alice Springs to put on the show of a lifetime. Their epic journey is a heart-warming story of self-discovery, sassiness and acceptance. 

This brand new production comes from the team behind the critically acclaimed UK tours of Hairspray; with direction by Paul Kerryson, choreography by Tom Jackson-Greaves with designs by Phil R Daniels and Charles Cusick Smith, musical supervision by Stephen ‘Spud’ Murphy, musical direction from Sean Green, lighting design by Ben Cracknell and sound design by Ben Harrison. Casting by David Grindrod Associates.

Tickets and More Info: PriscillaUKTour.com & PriscillaUKTour.co.uk