The Menier Chocolate Factory today announced that actress Sheridan Smith returns to the theatre to play Fanny Brice in a major new revival of Funny Girl. The multi award-winning Michael Mayer directs the production, which opens on 2 December, with previews from 20 November, and runs until 5 March 2016.
Funny Girl returns to the London stage for the first time since its 1966 premiere. With music by Jule Styne, lyrics by Bob Merrill and book by Isobel Lennart, the Broadway smash which skyrocketed Barbra Streisand to stardom, is revived with Sheridan Smith playing Fanny Brice, who rose from the Lower East Side of New York to become one of Broadway’s biggest stars under producer Florenz Ziegfield.
While she was cheered onstage as a great comedienne, offstage she faced a doomed relationship with the man she loved. The score features now-classic songs such as ‘People’, ‘You Are Woman, I Am Man’ and ‘Don’t Rain On My Parade’.
Sheridan Smith returns to the Menier Chocolate Factory to play Fanny Brice. She previously appeared in Little Shop of Horrors for the company (also Duke of York’s Theatre). Her other theatre work includes A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Michael Grandage Company at the Noel Coward Theatre), Hedda Gabler (Old Vic), Flare Path (Theatre Royal Haymarket – Olivier Award for Best Supporting Actress, Evening Standard and Critics’ Circle Awards for Best Actress), Legally Blonde (Savoy Theatre – Olivier Award for Best Actress in a Musical), Tinderbox (Bush Theatre), The People Are Friendly (Royal Court) and Into the Woods (Donmar Warehouse).
Michael Mayer directs. His West End credits include Spring Awakening (Lyric Hammersmith and Novello) and Thoroughly Modern Millie (Shaftesbury Theatre). For Broadway his work includes Hedwig and the Angry Inch (Tony nomination for Best Director), On a Clear Day You Can See Forever, American Idiot (Drama Desk Award for Best Director of a Musical), Spring Awakening (Tony Award for Best Direction of a Musical), Thoroughly Modern Millie (Drama Desk Award for Best Direction of a Musical) and You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown (Drama Desk nomination for Best Direction of a Musical).
Tickets go on sale to the Menier Chocolate Factory supporters at 9am on Monday 10 August, with public booking opening at 9am on Monday 17 August.
The production is presented in association with Sonia Friedman Productions and Scott Landis.