News Archive

27th December 2002
Elsewhere, it is customary at this time to look back over the year, and review triumphs and failures. Well we don't do that because we're more interested in the future than the past, so the tradition here is to look forward to what will happen in the West End - all based on hard, ...
20th December 2002
It's Official! As previously forecast here, Denise Van Outen will star in Tell Me On A Sunday at the Gielgud Theatre from 8th April, with Matthew Warchus directing. The show is a revised and extended version of Lloyd Webber and Don Black's song cycle about a the emotional travails...
13th December 2002
The new 15.7m Hampstead Theatre will open on 13th February with How To Behave by Station House Opera, a specially commissioned site specific piece combining music, video and live performance exploring the spaces in the theatre, which will run until 21st February. SHO have previously...
6th December 2002
It's Official! As previously forecast here, Nicholas Hyntner is living up to the promise he made at the inaugural meeting of Mercury Musical Developments, to treat musical theatre seriously when he takes over at the National. Signaling a definite regime change, he has snapped up ...
29th November 2002
Dawn French returns to the stage in Geraldine Aron's monologue My Brilliant Divorce, which will open at the Apollo Theatre in February, directed by Garry Hynes. Gyles Brandreth will make his West End debut in the composite musical entertainment Zipp! at the Duchess Theatre on 4th...
15th November 2002
Following Matthew Bourne's Nutcracker! at Christmas, the winter season at Sadler's Wells includes The Eifman Ballet Theatre of St Petersburg with the UK premieres of its dance melodramas Red Giselle, set against a backdrop of Soviet revolutionary artistic oppression, and Tchaikovsky...
1st November 2002
The Traverse Theatre production of Rona Munro's Iron, which was an Edinburgh Fringe hit, will transfer to the Royal Court Theatre from 27th January to 1st March. It tells the story of the encounter between a mother serving a term of life imprisonment for murder and her daughter, ...
25th October 2002
Malcolm Sutherland's previously mentioned stage adaptation of Gore Vidal's 1992 novel Live From Golgotha, a media satire involving the Crucifixion, will receive its world premiere at the Drill Hall from 10th November to 1st December, playing on Saturdays and Sundays only. It features...
18th October 2002
Owing to restoration work on its usual home, Nicholas Hawkesmoor's Christ Church, this year's Spitalfields Winter Festival will centre on Shoreditch Church from 10th to 20th December. It will explore the sound of the festive season through the centuries, from some of the earliest...
11th October 2002
It's Official! 1 As previously forecast here, the Edinburgh Fringe hit Aunty And Me starring Alan Davies and Marcia Warren will open at Wyndham's Theatre on 14th January. This is despite that fact that Warren is due to open in Arsenic And Old Lace at the Strand Theatre in February...
4th October 2002
The Little Angel Marionette Theatre in Islington (a stone's throw from the King's Head), which is the oldest and most respected puppet theatre in Britain, is back in business after a six month struggle to stave off permanent closure. The home of British puppetry lost local council...
27th September 2002
Now that the Royal Shakespeare Company has left, the Barbican International Theatre Event is a year round festival, and details of the first tranche of BITE:03 have been announced. Highlights include: Ingmar Bergman directing the Royal Dramatic Theatre of Sweden production of Ibsen...
20th September 2002
The West End is getting more and more like Broadway, with shows announced for theatres months in advance - sometimes even before their predecessors have opened. Although Abba Mania is still staggering on, and Brenda Blethyn doesn't assume the mantle of Mrs Warren until next month...
13th September 2002
It is now confirmed that Gillian Anderson will make her West End debut with Roger Allam in What The Night Is For, a new play by American writer Michael Weller, opening at the Comedy Theatre on 27th November. A married woman meets her former (and now also married) lover, and their...
5th September 2002
Alexander Armstrong, Victoria Hamilton and Jamie Theakston are to star in Somerset Maugham's comedy Home And Beauty, opening at the Lyric Theatre on 29th October. It is the story of a First World War 'widow' who becomes romantically involved and marries her husband's best friend, ...
30th August 2002
Edinburgh Fringe Report 1: The Festival's over and the survivors are preparing to head south. Previously announced London transfers are: Ross Noble: Sonic Waffle to the Vaudeville; David Grieg's Outlying Islands - bird watching, romantic discovery and anthrax - to the Royal Court...
23rd August 2002
Michael Grandage's first season as artistic director of the Donmar Warehouse will comprise: Francesca Annis and Chjwetel Ejiofor in Noel Coward's The Vortex, a story about a middle aged woman having an affair with a younger man, and her drug addict son, directed by Grandage, from...
16th August 2002
Sorely missed this year, the Covent Garden Festival is to be revived, with the Ambassador Theatre Group producing events in partnership with other companies. The musical theatre festival had built a strong reputation by staging shows in unusual venues - such as Trial By Jury in Bow...
9th August 2002
Stomp, the British percussion phenomenon, which employs everyday objects from dustbins to cigarette lighters as instruments, is coming to the West End for the first time, opening at the Vaudeville Theatre on 26th September. Luke Cresswell and Steve McNicholas created the show as ...
2nd August 2002
The previously mentioned British makeover of the French musical Romeo & Juliet, by lyricist Don Black and Opera Factory director David Freeman, will open at the Piccadilly Theatre on 6th November. The show, with music by Gerard Presgurvic, was first seen in Paris in January last ...
12th July 2002
The Society Of London Theatre is presenting the fourth Kids Week in the West End from 23rd to 30th August, designed to introduce young people to the theatregoing experience with thousands of free tickets and special events. Children between 5 and 16 can go free (when accompanied ...
5th July 2002
The National Theatre production of Nicholas Wright's Vincent In Brixton is to transfer directly to Wyndham's Theatre at the end of its run on 27th July. It currently stars Dutch actor Jochum ten Haaf in the title role, alongside Clare Higgins, Emily Blunt, Emma Handy and Paul Nicholls...
28th June 2002
Kyle MacLachlan and Woody Harrelson are the latest American recruits to the West End, starring in On An Average Day, by John Kolvenbach, opening at the Comedy Theatre on 7th August. MacLachlan and Harrelson play two estranged brothers who are reunited after 15 years, and examines...
21st June 2002
It's Official 1! As previously forecast here, the much touted production of Macbeth with Sean Bean, has been confirmed to open at the Albery Theatre on 14th November. Flavour of the moment director Edward Hall presides. After the Wars of the Roses in an abattoir, Birnham wood will...
14th June 2002
The annual Christmas battle of The Nutcracker's will open a third front this year. It is usually English National Ballet at the Coliseum going head to head (or toe to toe) with the Royal Ballet at Covent Garden. This year they will be joined by a revised version of Matthew Bourne...
7th June 2002
The promise held out by a record number of 20 nominations for British talent in this year's Tony Awards wasn't quite realised in the number of winners. Lindsay Duncan won Best Actress for Private Lives, which also took Best Play Revival and Best Scenic Design for Tim Hatley. Alan...
31st May 2002
After much speculation about dates and venues, the Tony Award winning dance-musical Contact will open at the Queen's Theatre on 23rd October, shortly after it ends its Broadway run. The show is made up of three stories about sex and power, co-conceived (with John Weidman), directed...
24th May 2002
Scottish comedy enthusiasts can enter a competition run by the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society to fill one of the three civilian places on the judging panel for the Perrier Awards. Anyone who thinks they can cope with 200 hours of comedy in the middle two weeks of August can apply...
17th May 2002
The Barbican Centre has announced details of BITE:02, its fifth Barbican International Theatre Event opening on 3rd July. This will now be expanded to fill the whole year, following the departure of the Royal Shakespeare Company. It boasts thirteen premieres of theatre, dance and...
10th May 2002
There is a record number of 20 nominations for British talent in this year's Tony Awards line up. They include Best Director: Howard Davies - Private Lives, Richard Eyre - The Crucible and Trevor Nunn - Oklahoma!; Best Actor: Alan Bates Fortune's Fool, Liam Neeson - The Crucible ...
3rd May 2002
Donmar Warehouse is setting a cracking pace with its American Imports season, as the second production, Kenneth Lonergan's Lobby Hero is set follow the first in transferring. It will open at the New Ambassadors Theatre on 26th June, with the original cast of David Tennant, Charlotte...
26th April 2002
The 108th season of the BBC Henry Wood Promenade Concerts takes place at the Royal Albert Hall between 19th July and 14th September. The world's greatest classical music festival centres on 73 main concerts (at least one every evening) with consistently low ticket prices, including...
19th April 2002
The Little Angel Marionette Theatre in Islington (a stone's throw from the King's Head), which is the oldest and most respected puppet theatre in Britain, is about to close because of funding problems. The home of British puppetry lost local council funding two years ago and has ...
12th April 2002
Stephen Adly Guirgis Jesus Hopped The A Train, the first play in the Donmar Warehouse American Imports season, is to transfer to the Arts Theatre on 24th April. The American cast led by John Ortiz and Salvatore Inzerillo, and directed by Philip Seymour Hoffman, will continue for ...
5th April 2002
The Bush Theatre has cause for a double celebration, as having launched its 30th anniversary season, Richard Cameron's The Glee Club transfers to the Duchess Theatre on 22nd April. Set in 1962, it tells the story of five Yorkshire miners and a church organist who are the toast of...
28th March 2002
On the orders of the landlords, bailiffs have seized the assets of the Players Theatre company, and evicted it from its premises in The Arches under Charing Cross station, in a long running dispute over unpaid rent. The Players is believed to have accumulated debts of over 500,000...
22nd March 2002
The National Theatre has confirmed details of its Transformation project, which will see a 1.5 million conversion of the Lyttelton Theatre and foyer into two smaller spaces opening in May. The five month season of new writing and experimental work at low prices, which is aimed at...
15th March 2002
It's Official! As previously forecast here, Denise Deegan's schoolgirl saga Daisy Pulls It Off, directed by David Gilmore, will open on 29th April at the Lyric Theatre. Set in 1927, it follows the trials and tribulations of a working class scholarship girl at a public school. It ...
8th March 2002
Sara Crowe, Serena Evans, Lucy Fleming, Steven Pacey, Jenny Seagrove, Linda Thorson and Simon Williams star in Somerset Maugham's The Constant Wife opening at Apollo Theatre on 2nd April, following an appearance at the Theatre Royal Windsor. Edward Hall directs the 1926 comedy about...
1st March 2002
Completely contradicting last week's rumour, Madonna will make her West End stage debut in Australian David Williamson's comedy Up For Grabs at Wyndham's Theatre on 23rd May. The satire on the art world, which was a big hit in Sydney last year, will be directed by Laurence Boswell...
22nd February 2002
Celebrating its first birthday, the Arcola Theatre has returned to its roots as a garment factory, to present the musical I Can Get It For You Wholesale until 23rd March, directed by Mehmet Ergen and William Galinsky. With book by Jerome Weidman based on his novel, and music and ...
15th February 2002
It's Official! As previously forecast here Judi Dench and Maggie Smith will star in The Breath Of Life, a new play by David Hare, about two women who have been involved with the same man, in the West End in September. Robert Fox (Ms Smith's favoured producer) will officiate, but ...
8th February 2002
Simon Callow returns to the West End in the one man show The Mystery Of Charles Dickens, at the Albery Theatre, from 7th to 30th March. Written by Dickens biographer Peter Ackroyd, and directed by Patrick Garland, the show gives Callow the opportunity to bring Charles Dickens to ...
1st February 2002
Gwyneth Paltrow will make her British stage debut in David Auburn's Tony Award winning play Proof at the Donmar Warehouse from 9th May to 15th June, directed by John Madden. It is the story of a mathematician who has inherited her father's genius for figures (but may also have inherited...
25th January 2002
Having been through a bad patch, productions are now circling the Haymarket Theatre like planes at Heathrow. Before Lady Windermere's Fan has even opened, it has been announced that it will be followed by Rose Rage. The two part adaptation of Shakespeare's Henry VI trilogy, created...
18th January 2002
Andrew Lloyd Webber's Cats is to end its run at the New London Theatre on 11th May, its 21st birthday - a sort of welcome to the world of the grown ups: You're Fired! It has stacked up a barrowload of statistics, in addition to being the longest running West End or Broadway musical...
11th January 2002
David Warner is to appear on the London stage after an absence of thirty years, in the European premiere of The Feast Of Snails, by Icelandic novelist Olaf Olafsson, at the Lyric Theatre on 18th February. This follows Warner's return to the theatre work last year in New York, having...
4th January 2002
Shockheaded Peter, the 'junk opera' based on Heinrich Hoffmann's gothic children's cautionary tale Struwwelpeter, but given a Rocky Horror style workover, will return to the West End at the Albery Theatre on 4th April. Cultural Industry's combination of puppetry, music and narrative...