Musical Theatre 2016 Preview – all you need to know

You can’t get more comprehensive than this, here’s a preview of all the 2016 musical theatre openings we know about so far in the West End, on the London Fringe and across the UK.

JANUARY:

Guys and Dolls – Savoy Theatre, London.

The highly acclaimed Chichester Festival Theatre revival of Frank Loesser, Jo Swerling and Abe Burrows’ Guys and Dolls plays at the Savoy for a strictly limited 13-week run (press night is 6 January 2016). In the cast are Sophie Thompson (Miss Adelaide), Jamie Parker (Sky Masterson), David Haig (Nathan Detroit) and Siubhan Harrison (Sarah Brown).

Grey Gardens1 Sheila Hancock and Jenna Russell Photo Scott Rylander

Sheila Hancock and Jenna Russell in Grey Gardens in Southwark Playhouse, London. Picture: Scott Rylander

Grey Gardens – Southwark Playhouse, London.

Olivier Award-winning West End stars Sheila Hancock and Jenna Russell star in the European premiere of the Broadway musical Grey Gardens, based on an iconic 1975 documentary telling the spectacular real life rise and fall of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis’ aunt and cousin, Edith and Edie Bouvier Beale. Produced by Danielle Tarento and directed by Thom Southerland, Grey Gardens has a six-week season (press night is Thursday 7 January).

Stony Broke in No Man’s Land – Finborough Theatre, London.

A new play written and directed by acclaimed playwright John Burrows, returns to the Finborough Theatre for a season from 10 January to 26 January 2016. The cast are David Brett and Gareth Willams, two of the original members of  The Flying Pickets (best-known for their No. 1 hit ‘Only You’).

Jekyll & Hyde – Cockpit Theatre, London.

Written by Eric Gracey, the Blue Orange Theatre’s Jazz Age re-imagining of Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic novella Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde runs at London’s Cockpit Theatre from 13 January until 6 February. The new production, which will be directed by the Blue Orange’s artistic director Mark Webster, transfers the gothic horror story into a 1930s setting complete with live performances of jazz standards.

Springtime for Henry (and Barbara) – Wilton’s Music Hall, London.

Composer/performer Gwyneth Herbert and artist Mel Brimfield are presenting their latest collaboration, Springtime for Henry (and Barbara) – described as a fictitious ‘lost’ musical, reconstructed in fragments, centred around the lives of British sculptors Henry Moore and Barbara Hepworth. The production will run for three performances across two nights (26–27 January) at Wilton’s Music Hall, the world’s oldest surviving music hall, comprising elements of musical theatre, performance art and film.

Audra McDonald – Leicester Square Theatre.

Record-breaking American stage and screen performer Audra McDonald’s forthcoming show at the Leicester Square Theatre in London on 17 January sold out in four hours. Due to overwhelming demand, the Broadway star added a 3pm matinee show scheduled for the same day. This is McDonald’s first London show in 15 years.

Mr Wonderful – A Celebration of Jonathan Ollivier’s Life – Sadler’s Wells.

The life of gifted dancer Jonathan Ollivier will be celebrated in an extra special evening of dance at Sadler’s Wells on 18 January. New Adventures and Re: Bourne’s Mr Wonderful – A Celebration of Jonathan Ollivier’s Life In Dance is planned as a fitting fundraising tribute to the dancer who tragically died in an accident last year on the way to the final performance of The Car Man.

Seasons of Larson - Artwork ImageSeasons of Larson – Lyric Theatre, London.

Debbie Kurup, Krysten Cummings and Damien Flood, all previous cast members of Larson’s hit rock musical Rent, will be among the artists to appear in Seasons of Larson, a one-off concert celebrating the life and music of legendary Broadway composer Jonathan Larson. The concert will take place on 25 January at the Lyric Theatre, Shaftesbury Avenue. Seasons of Larson will be directed by Hannah Chissick and is produced by Katy Lipson for Aria Entertainment and Guy James.

The Oliviers In Concert – Royal Festival Hall.

Michael Ball, Katie Brayben, John Dagleish, Elaine Paige and Clive Rowe are the latest award winners to join the line-up for the BBC Concert Orchestra’s celebratory The Oliviers In Concert. The show at London’s Royal Festival on 25 January will be staged by triple Olivier Award winner Maria Friedman, who will also perform, and Tim Jackson.

tick, tick…BOOM!/Rent – Old Joint Stock Theatre, Birmingham.

The Old Joint Stock Theatre in Birmingham presents both of Jonathan Larson’s published works over the week which will mark the 20th anniversary of his passing. Opening on 23 January, tick, tick…BOOM! runs for seven performances, and RENT – Performed in Concert will take place on 24 and 25 January.

Cabaret – Aberdeen’s Arts Centre.

A major new production of Kander and Ebb’s Cabaret will also mark Holocaust Memorial Day when it opens at Aberdeen’s Arts Centre Theatre on 27 January. West End stars Carolyn Maitland (Miss Saigon) and Lucas Rush (American Idiot) will play the lead roles of Sally Bowles and the Emcee in the show.

Blood Brothers - Lyn Paul as Mrs Johnstone (previous cast production) (2)

Lyn Paul as Mrs Johnstone in a previous production of Blood Brothers

Blood Brothers – Touring.

Former seventies pop star Lyn Paul will return to the role of Mrs Johnstone in Blood Brothers nearly 20 years after she first starred in Willy Russell’s much-loved musical. Paul first won rave reviews for her performance as the character in 1997, she later returned to the role and featured in the show’s final West End performances at the Phoenix Theatre in 2012. The 2016 tour will open in Peterborough on 12 January.

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamboat – Touring

X Factor winner Joe McElderry will play the title role in the UK’s longest-running musical Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamboat. McElderry will play Joseph on tour in theatres around the UK from spring 2016 (beginning 25 to 30 January at The Broadway, Peterborough).

Avenue Q – Touring

Sell a Door Theatre Company and Richard Darbourne Ltd bring back their touring production of award-winning comedy musical Avenue Q. A smash hit on Broadway, in the West End and most recently in their critically-acclaimed UK tours, Avenue Q opens at the New Theatre, Cardiff on 25 January. With a book by Jeff Whitty and music and lyrics by Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx, the production is directed and choreographed by Cressida Carré.

Footloose – Touring.

Gareth Gates (Willard) and Maureen Nolan (Vi Moore) have been cast in the new touring production of Footloose the Musical. Directed by Racky Plews (recent projects include American Idiot), the tour begins in Bridlington on 29 January.

Ian Bartholomew and Tracie Bennett in Mrs Henderson Presents at Theatre Royal Bath. Picture: Nobby Clark

Ian Bartholomew and Tracie Bennett in Mrs Henderson Presents at Theatre Royal Bath. Picture: Nobby Clark

FEBRUARY:

Mrs Henderson Presents – Noel Coward Theatre, London.

Following a sell-out season at the Theatre Royal Bath this summer, Mrs Henderson Presents will open at the Noel Coward Theatre on 9 February, for a strictly limited season. Mrs Henderson Presents will star Tracie Bennett as Laura Henderson, Ian Bartholomew as Vivian Van Damm and Emma Williams as Maureen who all reprise the roles they played in Bath.

The War of the Worlds – Dominion Theatre.

Producer Bill Kenwright has joined forces with former pop star Jeff Wayne to bring the major new production of Wayne’s innovative The War of the Worlds to the West End early next year. The spectacular production, which features the classic score played live on stage conducted by Wayne himself, will preview at the Dominion Theatre from 8 February with an opening night gala performance on 17 February.

The World Goes Round – St James Theatre, London.

West End performers Oliver Tompsett and Debbie Kurup headline The World Goes Round: The Songs of Kander and Ebb which runs from 2–7 February at St James Theatre, following a successful season at The Pheasantry in Chelsea. Joining Tompsett and Kurup are Steffan Lloyd-Evans, Alexandra Da Silva and Sally Samad.

Road Show – Union Theatre, London.

The Union Theatre and the Phil Willmott Company are presenting the first UK revival of Stephen Sondheim and John Weidman’s Road Show from 3 February to 5 March. Road Show is the latest production in the Union’s long association with the musicals of Stephen Sondheim.

The Great Jewish American Songbook – Upstairs At the Gatehouse, London/Radlett Centre.

Aria Entertainment presents The Great Jewish American Songbook, celebrating the ‘Jewish songwriters who made entertainment history’. The show will star Grant McConvey, Jennifer Harding, Lee Ormsby and Jessie May. Directed by Matthew Gould and written by Chris Burgess, the show plays at Highgate’s Upstairs At the Gatehouse from 9–28 February and then on 6 March at the Radlett Centre.

The Kissing Dance – Ye Olde Rose and Crown Theatre, London.

Continuing its commitment to producing revivals of rarely produced musicals, All Star Productions will be presenting Howard Goodall and Charles Hart’s The Kissing Dance from 10–28 February at Ye Olde Rose and Crown Theatre in Walthamstow. Based on Oliver Goldsmith’s play She Stoops to Conquer, this is also the company’s fourth production with music by Goodall.

11223853_829068573857962_8605432678103152556_n-300x300Beyond the Fence – Arts Theatre, London.

In a world first, Sky Arts and Wingspan Theatricals will present the premiere of the world’s first ‘computer musical’. Beyond the Fence will play at the Arts Theatre in London from 22 February to 5 March, directed by Luke Sheppard. Beyond the Fence is conceived by computer and substantially crafted by computer. It is modelled on a statistical study of the ‘recipe for success’ in hit musicals. The groundbreaking process is being filmed for a Sky Arts TV series titled Computer Says Show, chronicling this unique experiment.

Stay Awake, Jake – The Vaults, London.

Stay Awake, Jake is the one-act show penned by Tim Gilvin which won The S&S Award for new writing. Jamie Muscato stars in the new one-man musical which previously had an abridged performance at the St James Theatre and a showcase at the Leicester Square Theatre. It runs as part of the Vault Festival, playing from 3–7 February, and is directed by Matt Ryan.

The Last Five Years – New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich.

Ipswich’s New Wolsey Theatre will be celebrating its 15th birthday with a packed anniversary season that begins on 25 February with The Last Five Years, the musical by Jason Robert Brown. The New Wolsey’s version will star Katie Birtill who took the title role in the venue’s staging of Sweet Charity. The production will be directed by the New Wolsey Theatre’s artistic director Peter Rowe and will run until 11 March.

Tell Me On a Sunday – Watermill Theatre, Newbury and Touring.

A national tour of the Watermill Theatre production of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Don Black’s classic musical Tell Me On a Sunday, starring Jodie Prenger, opens on 2 March, following a season at the Watermill Theatre from 28 January to 20 February. Tell Me On a Sunday is directed by Paul Foster with musical supervision by Catherine Jayes.

Carnival Dreams the Musical – Ashcroft Theatre, Croydon.

The world premiere of Carnival Dreams the Musical will be presented at the Ashcroft Theatre, Croydon from 3 to 6 February. With book and lyrics by Norman Mark and music by Robert Orledge, the story revolves around a small community dance group in Argentina which is preparing for the annual Samba competition. Cheryl Fergison, who played the much loved Heather Trott in EastEnders, will lead the cast.

Billy Elliot at The Palace Theatre Victoria

Billy Elliot the Musical goes on tour in February

Billy Elliot the Musical – Touring.

The hit musical Billy Elliot the Musical will begin its first ever UK and Ireland tour at Plymouth’s Theatre Royal on 24 February. Annette McLaughlin will take on the pivotal role of Mrs Wilkinson alongside Martin Walsh as Dad, Scott Garnham as Tony and Andrea Miller as Grandma. Due to the Victoria Palace Theatre’s previously announced refurbishment programme, the West End production will play its final performance on 9 April 2016.

Chicago – Touring.

Former prison officer turned reality TV star Sam Bailey will play the most famous jailer in musical theatre, Mamma Morton, in the touring version of Chicago. Bailey, who won the 2013 X Factor title, will join two former soap stars John Partridge (who will play Billy Flynn) and Hayley Tamaddon as Roxie Hart on the UK tour which will begin at the New Theatre Oxford on 12 February.

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang – Touring.

The Music & Lyrics Limited and West Yorkshire Playhouse production of the much-loved Sherman Brothers musical Chitty Chitty Bang Bang begins a UK and Ireland tour at the Mayflower Theatre, Southampton on 10 February. Caractacus Potts will be played by Jason Manford from 10 February until 24 April, and he will return to the show from 5 October 2016. Lee Mead will play Caractacus Potts from 4 May until 18 September 2016.

The Jazzabelles – Touring.

Pianist and composer Nick Boyle’s musical The Jazzabelles has been programmed throughout Northern Ireland in February 2016. Set in 1950s Belfast, The Jazzabelles is the story of three girls who long for a better life. After a chance meeting they form a vocal trio, The Jazzabelles, and dream of performing at the prestigious Floral Hall. The tour begins at the Strule Theatre, Omagh on 11 February.

End of the Rainbow – Touring.

Actress and television presenter Lisa Maxwell takes on the central role of Judy Garland in a new touring production of Peter Quilter’s End of the Rainbow. Maxwell is joined by Gary Wilmot and Sam Attwater for the tour which opens at the Mercury Theatre, Colchester on 12 February. The new touring production is directed by Colchester Mercury Theatre artistic director Daniel Buckroyd.

1. L-R Lucy St. Louis, Cherelle Williams , Tanya Nicole Edwards as The Supremes in Motown The Musical. Photo Credit Hugo Glendinning

(L–R) Lucy St. Louis, Cherelle Williams and Tanya Nicole Edwards as The Supremes in Motown the Musical. Picture: Hugo Glendinning

MARCH:

Motown the Musical – Shaftesbury Theatre, London.

Cedric Neal (Berry Gordy) and Lucy St. Louis (Diana Ross) lead the cast in the West End production of Motown the Musical. With music and lyrics from the legendary Motown catalogue and book by Motown founder Berry Gordy, Motown the Musical opens at the Shaftesbury Theatre on 8 March, with the show booking to 22 October 2016.

If You Kiss Me, Kiss Me – Young Vic, London.

Performing with a live band and a company of dancers, Jane Horrocks invokes the rebel spirit of new wave in the world premiere of If You Kiss Me, Kiss Me. The show conjures the hopes, disillusionment and messy relationships that were the hallmarks of the 1970s and 80s music scene in the UK. The piece is conceived by Horrocks and Aletta Collins (direction and choreography) and runs at the Young Vic from 10 March to 16 April.

Bar Mitzvah Boy – Upstairs at the Gatehouse Theatre, London.

Aria Entertainment is presenting a rare revival of the musical Bar Mitzvah Boy which will run for six weeks at London’s Upstairs at the Gatehouse Theatre from 3 March to 10 April. Jack Rosenthal adapted his award-winning 1976 TV play for the musical stage with composer Jule Styne and lyricist Don Black. Directed by Stewart Nicholls, this is the first UK staging of Bar Mitzvah Boy since the original 1978 London production.

Miss Atomic Bomb – St James Theatre.

Tanya Link Productions presents Miss Atomic Bomb, the world premiere of a new musical at St James Theatre (7 March to 9 April). The piece is by Adam Long, Gabriel Vick and Alex Jackson-Long, co-directed and choreographed by Olivier Award winner Bill Deamer and co-directed by Adam Long. Miss Atomic Bomb is a satirical tale set in Nevada in 1952 and inspired by the unlikely confluence of tourism, the mob and the military at the time of the atomic bomb tests of the era.

Babes In Arms – The Musical in Concert – Royal Festival Hall, London.

Babes In Arms – The Musical in Concert, a new version of the 1930s show that features American songbook standards like ‘My Funny Valentine’, ‘The Lady is a Tramp’ and ‘Where Or When’, plays the Royal Festival Hall on 2 March. The event is the latest in a series of Musicals in Concert presented by leading independent concert promoter Senbla (Peter Pan, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying).

TOM. A Story of Tom Jones.The Musical. Kit Orton (Tom Jones). Photo credit Simon Gough Photography LR

Kit Orton in A Story of Tom Jones – The Musical. Picture: Simon Gough Photography

Tom – A Story of Tom Jones – The Musical – Touring.

Theatre na nÓg’s UK tour of their production Tom – A Story of Tom Jones – The Musical is due to open at Cardiff’s Millennium Centre on 7 March. Kit Orton will play the central role of Tom Jones alongside Elin Phillips. Tom – A Story of Tom Jones – The Musical, written by Mike James, was first seen on 1 March 2014 in the singer’s birthplace, Pontypridd.

Jackie The Musical – Touring.

New show Jackie The Musical, which fondly remembers the days when no teenage girl’s bag was complete without a copy of the iconic magazine, will begin a UK tour at Dundee’s Gardyne Theatre on 11 March. Written by Mike James, the musical will be directed by Anna Lindstrum with choreography by Arlene Phillips. TV and stage star Janet Dibley will head the show’s cast in the central role of Jackie.

American Idiot – Touring.

Green Day’s Tony Award-winning Broadway musical American Idiot will embark on a national tour from 19 March 2016, following on from its successful West End run. The tour commences at the Curve Theatre, Leicester, directed and choreographed by Racky Plews. Steve Rushton is one of four more members of the original London cast to return for the tour, others include Alexis Gerred, Lucas Rush, Llandyll Gove and Amelia Lily.

GlennClose at the London Coliseum at the launch of Sunset Boulevard. Photo credit Richard Hubert Smith

Glenn Close at the London Coliseum at the launch of Sunset Boulevard. Picture: Richard Hubert Smith

APRIL:

Sunset Boulevard – London Coliseum.

Glenn Close makes her West End debut as Norma Desmond in Andrew Lloyd Webber, Don Black and Christopher Hampton’s Sunset Boulevard, the second production in the partnership between English National Opera (ENO) and the GradeLinnit Company. Lonny Price will direct the strictly limited run of 43 performances at ENO’s London Coliseum which begins on 1 April 2016. The full ENO orchestra will appear on stage alongside the cast in this semi-staged production.

Funny Girl – Savoy Theatre.

Due to unprecedented demand the Menier Chocolate Factory production of Funny Girl transfers to the Savoy Theatre in London’s West End, following the sold out run at the Menier Chocolate Factory. Michael Mayer’s production, starring Olivier and BAFTA award-winning actress Sheridan Smith as Fanny Brice, and with the cast from the Menier Chocolate Factory, will begin performances at the Savoy Theatre on 9 April for a strictly limited run until 10 September – marking the musical’s 50th anniversary year.

All Or Nothing – The Mod Musical – The Vaults Theatre, London.

Classic British band The Small Faces is the subject of the musical All Or Nothing – The Mod Musical which will play London’s The Vaults Theatre from 31 March to 30 April. Former EastEnders star Carol Harrison’s show about the 1960s band features all the group’s biggest hits. The production will be directed by BAFTA winner Tony McHale, the co-creator of the hit BBC hospital drama Holby City.

Americana: In Concert – Theatre Royal Stratford East, London.

Winners of the Cameron Mackintosh Award for Musical Theatre, writing duo Graham Mercer (book, music and lyrics) and Conway McDermott (book) are the voices behind Americana: In Concert, a brand new British musical at Theatre Royal Stratford East (31 March to 2 April) developed with producing talent Hungry Bitches Productions. High School Musical meets an All-American Nightmare in this love story between a rebellious stoner punk and an All-American football player.

The Buskers Opera – Park Theatre and Touring.

As Park Theatre enters its third year, artistic director Jez Bond has announced its new season of work will include the world premiere of brand new British musical The Buskers Opera by Dougal Irvine, providing a refreshingly innovative take on John Gay’s classic The Beggar’s Opera. Before touring the country, The Buskers Opera will play at the Park Theatre from 28 April to 4 June.

Legally Blonde the Musical – Curve Leicester.

A new production of Legally Blonde the Musical is one of the highlights of Leicester Curve’s spring 2016 season, the first under the leadership team of chief executive Chris Stafford, artistic director Nikolai Foster and commercial director Alister de Ternant. Foster will direct the new production which opens on 11 April and will run until 14 May. The show’s creative team includes designer Matthew Wright, choreographer Nick Winston and orchestrator Sarah Travis.

Laila The Musical Image

Laila The Musical

Laila – Touring.

Contemporary musical Laila comes from the creators of Britain’s Got Bhangra. Director and writer Pravesh Kumar, composer Sumeet Chopra and lyricist Dougal Irvine have collaborated on this retelling of the greatest eastern love story – Laila Majnu. A co-production with Rifco, Watford Palace Theatre and the Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch, Laila opens at Watford Palace Theatre on 7 April before touring.

MAY:

Jekyll & Hyde – The Old Vic, London.

A new dance thriller, Jekyll & Hyde is directed and choreographed by Drew McOnie and inspired by Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. Playing from 21 May, McOnie reimagines the sinister drama in a physical new dance production with music by Grant Olding. Jekyll & Hyde has been commissioned by The Old Vic as part of its new dance collaboration with The McOnie Company.

Carousel – Pitlochry Festival Theatre.

For the first time since 1996, Pitlochry Festival Theatre’s rep season will contain seven productions. Not only that, but the 2016 season will also feature the first Rodgers and Hammerstein musical ever to be staged at PFT – Carousel (27 May to 15 October). Previous PFT musical productions include My Fair Lady, Hello, Dolly! and Kiss Me, Kate.

Flowers For Mrs Harris – Crucible Theatre, Sheffield.

Artistic director of Sheffield Theatres, Daniel Evans (soon to move to Chichester) will direct the world premiere of a new British musical Flowers For Mrs Harris as part of the company’s new season (18 May to 4 June). The piece is written by Richard Taylor and Rachel Wagstaff, based on the novel by Paul Gallico, and will star Clare Burt (returning to Sheffield Theatres, where she appeared in the award-winning This is My Family, to play Mrs Harris).

The Romford Rose – Queen’s Theatre, Hornchurch.

Filled with original tunes, The Romford Rose runs from 27 May to 18 June, and is crafted with the Queen’s Hornchurch and Romford community in mind. Playwright Chris Bond draws from a long association with the Queen’s, where his hits include It’s a Fine Life! and Sweeney Todd. This country musical also has music by Jo Collins.

Jade Ewen and Dean John-Wilson will lead the cast of Aladdin, playing at the Prince Edward Theatre from 27 May 2016. Picture: Helen Maybanks

Jade Ewen and Dean John-Wilson will lead the cast of Aladdin, playing at the Prince Edward Theatre from 27 May. Picture: Helen Maybanks

JUNE:

Aladdin – Prince Edward Theatre, London.

Dean John-Wilson will play the role of Aladdin alongside Jade Ewen as Jasmine in the West End premiere of the new musical based on the classic Academy Award-winning animated film. Aladdin will now open at the Prince Edward Theatre on 15 June, with previews from 27 May. John-Wilson and Ewen will be joined by Broadway cast member Trevor Dion Nicholas who will make his London stage debut as Genie. Aladdin features music by Alan Menken, lyrics from Howard Ashman, Tim Rice and Chad Beguelin, and a book by Beguelin. Casey Nicholaw directs.

Bugsy Malone – Lyric Hammersmith.

The Lyric Hammersmith’s critically acclaimed production of Alan Parker’s Bugsy Malone, with music and lyrics by Paul Williams and directed by Sean Holmes, will return to the Lyric for a 12-week run, opening on 24 June.

Bernadette Peters in Concert – Royal Festival Hall, London and Opera House, Manchester.

The triple Tony, double Drama Desk and Golden Globe Award-winning Broadway star Bernadette Peters will perform her first UK solo concerts in more than 15 years, returning to the Royal Festival Hall, London on 3 June and playing her first ever date at the Opera House, Manchester on 5 June. The Grammy and Emmy Award nominee will perform signature songs from the multitude of iconic shows in which she has played some of her greatest stage roles, including Gypsy, Into the Woods and Sunday in the Park With George.

Into the Woods – West Yorkshire Playhouse, Leeds.

This new production of Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine’s musical unites Opera North and West Yorkshire Playhouse in their first major collaboration. Featuring the Chorus of Opera North and directed by the Playhouse’s artistic director James Brining, Into the Woods plays from 2 to 25 June.

LYTHAM FESTIVAL Lea Salonga Photo Credit Raymund Isaac

Lea Salonga is due to appear at the Lytham Festival. Picture: Raymund Isaac

JULY:

Jesus Christ Superstar – Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre, London.

Celebrating 45 years since Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s seminal musical first hit the stage, Timothy Sheader will direct Jesus Christ Superstar from 15 July to 27 August. With a score including ‘I Don’t Know How to Love Him’, ‘Gethsemane’ and ‘Superstar’, this production will have choreography by Drew McConie.

AUGUST:

The West End Proms – Lytham Festival 2016.

West End and Broadway stars are set to entertain the crowds at Lytham Festival’s Last Night of the Proms. The week-long festival in August will see in excess of 70,000 people visit the town on the North West’s Fylde Coast. The West End Proms will feature Lea Salonga, Ramin Karimloo, Collabro, Ruthie Henshall, Claire Sweeney, Jodie Prenger and Lytham-born rising West End star Lucie-Mae Sumner.

Dirty Dancing – The Classic Story On Stage – Touring.

A brand new production of Dirty Dancing – The Classic Story On Stage will tour the UK from August (beginning at the Blackpool Opera House on 11 August). The classic story of Baby and Johnny will return following two West End runs and two hit UK tours. This new production will be created by director by Federico Bellone, artistic director of Milan’s Teatro Nazionale, choreographer Gillian Bruce and top Italian set designer Roberto Cometti.

Sunny Afternoon – Touring.

The multi Olivier Award-winning musical Sunny Afternoon will follow its West End success with a UK tour. The musical story of The Kinks will begin touring the country on 19 August at the Manchester Opera House.

SEPTEMBER:

Wicked – Apollo Victoria Theatre.

The London production of Wicked, the award-winning musical that tells the untold story of the Witches of Oz, celebrates its tenth birthday in 2016. Wicked officially opened at the Apollo Victoria Theatre on 27 September 2006.

The Wind in the Willows LOGO.jpgOCTOBER:

The Wind in the Willows – Theatre Royal, Plymouth and The Lowry, Salford before opening in the West End.

The highly-anticipated major new musical theatre adaptation of The Wind in the Willows created by Julian Fellowes, George Stiles and Anthony Drewe is confirmed to open at the Theatre Royal in Plymouth from 8 October, followed by The Lowry in Salford from 26 October prior to opening in London’s West End. Based on Kenneth Grahame’s treasured novel, The Wind in the Willows is developed and produced by Jamie Hendry Productions and directed by Rachel Kavanaugh.

From Page to Stage – Tristan Bates Theatre, London.

Aria Entertainment has announced that its popular new musical showcase From Page to Stage will return for another season at the end of 2016. The season will run at the Tristan Bates Theatre in London’s Covent Garden from 31 October to 3 December.

The Commitments – Dublin and Touring.

Nearly three decades after Roddy Doyle created exuberant Irish soul band The Commitments, the successful stage musical version of his bestseller is heading home to Dublin. Following on from its record-breaking residency at the Palace Theatre in London’s West End, The Commitments will open on 12 October for a limited run of 23 performances at Dublin’s Bord Gàis Energy Theatre before embarking on a year-long UK tour.

DECEMBER:

Great Expectations – Blackpool Opera House

The musical and classic story Great Expectations has been added to the 2016 season at Blackpool Winter Gardens. The show will open at the Opera House, running from 10 December to 7 January 2017. The show will be produced by Peter Frosdick who also presented 2015’s festive production of A Christmas Carol, starring Paul Nicholas.

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