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Sheridan Smith (Narrator) in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat Photographer Tristram Kenton

Sheridan Smith (Narrator) in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat Photographer Tristram Kenton

Famous faces on the stage this summer

Eleni Cashell

By Eleni Cashell First Published 9 July 2019, Last Updated 15 July 2019

There are more stars in Theatreland than the night’s sky this summer. From Hollywood legends who’ve never been on the West End stage, to TV stars you never knew could belt out a tune, there’s many famous faces on the stage this summer.

Here’s where to catch some very recognisable faces!

9 To 5 The Musical

Caroline Sheen, Amber Davies and Natalie McQueen in 9 To 5 The Musical

Open now – 4 April 2020

Clocking into this new musical isn’t just one famous face, but several!

Love Island star Amber Davies stars as Judy Bernly, opposite West End legends Caroline Sheen (Amber) and Natalie McQueen (Doralee). In the show, these three women band together in order to defeat their mean, sexist boss, played by none other than comedian Brian Conley.

And if that wasn’t enough, Bonnie Langford plays the role of Roz Keith in this stage adaptation of the iconic Dolly Parton film.

 

The Actor’s Nightmare

The Actor's Nightmare at the Park Theatre

16 July – 10 August

It’s always exciting when an American movie star comes to Theatreland, and this casting announcement was no exception.

Meaghan Martin, who starred in the successful Disney movie Camp Rock, is joining the cast of The Actor’s Nightmare at the Park Theatre.

Part of a season of shows at the venue, The Actor’s Nightmare delves into the eccentric, absurd and lonely world of New York theatre. It has been described as both a celebration of show business and a touching reflection on what it means to be an artist.

Related Article: Tracy-Ann Oberman, Miriam Margolyes and Camp Rock star Meaghan Martin to star in Park Theatre’s new season
The Park Theatre's new season has been announced, and it includes two world premieres, two UK and London premieres and West End and Broadway revivals.

 

Bitter Wheat

Bitter Wheat at the Garrick Theatre (Photo: Manuel Harlan)

Open now – 21st September

Hollywood actor John Malkovich hasn’t been on the West End stage for nearly 30 years, but now he’s finally back in David Mamet’s latest production, Bitter Wheat.

John is playing the role of Barney Fein, a corrupt, influential and predatory Hollywood producer with dark secrets to hide. Centring on his fall from power and worldwide shame, this show is a mix of drama, chaos and dark comedy.

Bitter Wheat also stars Doon Mackichan – best known for creating and starring in Channel 4’s comedy series Smack The Pony – as Barney Fein’s assistant Sondra.

 

Dark Sublime

Marina Sirtis will star in Dark Sublime

Open now – 3 August

If you’re a sci-fi fan, you’re definitely going to want to beam yourself into Dark Sublime, which stars Marina Sirtis (Star Trek: The Next Generation) in the lead role.

Making her West End debut, Marina plays a forgotten sci-fi TV icon who just wants a second chance at the spotlight. When superfan Oli turns up on her doorstep asking for an autograph, they explore each other’s worlds as they try to make both their wishes come true.

A love letter to British sci-fi television, the show also features the vocal talents of Mark Gatiss (Sherlock, The League Of Gentlemen) who’s lending his voice to Kosley the talking computer.

The perfect play for anybody who has ever enjoyed sci-fi, Dark Sublime is the ultimate place to geek-out.

 

Everybody’s Talking About Jamie

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Open now – Booking until 25 Jan 2020

Everybody’s talking about the latest additions to this upbeat, Olivier Award-nominated musical, that’s based on a true story.

Playing Jamie New, the teenager with big dreams of being a drag queen is Layton Williams. As well as playing Billy Elliot back in 2007 (which was his West End debut), Layton has also appeared in hit TV shows including Beautiful People and the Jack Whitehall comedy, Bad Education.

Coronation star Bill Ward is currently playing Hugo / Loco Chanel, while Faye Tozer from Steps is playing the ever-tested teacher Miss Hedge. From 5 August EastEnders actress Rita Simons will be stepping into Miss Hedge’s Jimmy Choo shoes.

 

Fiddler On The Roof

The cast of Fiddler On The Roof (photo credit: Johan Persson)

Open now – 2 November

You’ll want to shout “To Life – L’chaim!” from the fiddler’s rooftops after seeing this incredible cast at the Playhouse Theatre.

Leading the family in the role of Teyve is Andy Nyman. Co-creator and star of hit stage show Ghost Stories, as well as a collaborator on several Derren Brown shows, Andy is no stranger to the West End, winning several awards for his incredible work across theatre, film and television.

Joining the family is theatrical icon Maria Friedman as Golde. Maria has won three Olivier Awards (and been nominated seven times), during her incredibly successful career, which also includes releasing several studio albums.

Completing this star-studded cast is Anita Dobson. Another Olivier Award nominee, Anita is well known for playing Angie Watts in EastEnders, but she’s also received critical acclaim for several stage roles, including playing Mama Morton in Chicago and Gertrude in Hamlet.

 

The Girl On The Train

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23 July – 17 August

Fans of thrillers will be delighted to hear that the best-selling book The Girl On The Train has been turned into a stage show, featuring Samantha Womack (Eastenders) in the role of Rachel Watson.

In the show, Rachel Watson goes from curious train passenger watching a happy couple from afar, to being caught up in a mystery of a disappearing woman.

Currently on a UK tour, the London production will also feature Sam’s former EastEnders co-stars, Alex Ferns (D.I Gaskill) and Marc Elliott (Dr Kamal Abdic).

Here Come The Boys

Here Come The Boys at Adelphi Theatre

14 July

Strictly fans, put on your dancing shoes, as three of the show’s professional dancers are hitting the West End stage for one night only.

Aljaž Škorjanec, Giovanni Pernice and Gorka Marquez are taking their Strictly competitiveness and battling it out on the dancefloor. The best bit? You the audience get to decide who is the victorious champion of the night.

They’ll be accompanied by a live percussionist and flamenco guitarist, with vocals from former Clean Bandit artist Elizabeth Troy. Expect everything from J.Lo to Bruno Mars, Gloria Estefan to dance anthems and club classics. You’ll struggle to stay in your seats!

 

The Illusionists

The Illusionists tickets at Shaftesbury Theatre

Open now – 1 September

Seven of the world’s top illusionists are ready to give audiences a truly magical evening at the Shaftesbury Theatre.

If you’ve watched Britain’s Got Talent this year, you may already recognise one of the illusionists as Daredevil and Escape Artist, Jonathan Goodwin. He’s not the only Got Talent alumni though, as he’s joined by The Unforgettable Enzo, who once made a helicopter appear on stage on France’s Got Talent.

Then there’s The Showman, James More, who’s a world-leading illusionist, The Manipulator, Yu Ho-Jin, and The Futurist, Adam Trent, who’s appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show several times.

And if you’ve seen Harry Potter And The Cursed Child you would have seen work created by award-winning Mentalist, Chris Cox, who along with The Trickster, Paul Dabek, completes this incredible line-up.

 

Joseph And The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat

Sheridan Smith, Jason Donovan, Jac Yarrow and the company of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat Photographer Tristram Kenton

Open now – 7 September

The cast of this show is almost as bright as the colours on the world’s most famous coat.

Returning to the London stage for the first time in ten years, this production also marks the return of Jason Donovan, who received an Olivier Award nomination for his portrayal of Joseph in the 1990s. This time Jason has said goodbye to the coat of many colours, and is playing the role of Pharaoh.

Joining him in the critical role of narrator is double Olivier Award winner Sheridan Smith. Sheridan has wowed audiences in her stage roles before, including performances in Funny Girl and Legally Blonde The Musical.

Fresh drama graduate Jac Yarrow is playing the role of Joseph, and we expect to see him on these kinds of lists in the near future!

 

The Lehman Trilogy

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Open now – 31 August

This five-time Olivier-nominated show has a trio of famous talent; Simon Russell Beale, Adam Godley and Ben Miles.

The show focuses on the story of a family and a company that changed the world.  Told in three parts and spanning several years, Simon, Adam and Ben (who were jointly nominated for the 2019 Best Actor Olivier Award) play the Lehman Brothers, their sons and grandsons.

Directed by the talented Sam Mendes, this show initially had a sold-out run at the National Theatre before transferring to its temporary new home at the Piccadilly Theatre.

 

The Night Of The Iguana

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Open now – 28 September

The Night Of The Iguana sees the welcome return of Golden Globe-winning actor Clive Owen to the West End stage, after an 18-year absence.

And Clive isn’t the star burning bright in this production. Joining him is Anna Gunn, well known for her role as Skyler opposite Bryan Cranston in Breaking Bad, and Lia Williams, whose catalogue of roles include appearances in The Crown and Kiri.

This classic Tennessee Williams’ play hasn’t been in London in 14 years – nearly as long as Clive has been away from our stages! The show follows a disgraced priest (played by Clive), and a group of misfits and lost souls, who all arrive at a run-down hotel in Mexico in the 1940s.

 

Noises Off

The Company of Noises Off at Lyric Hammersmith. Photo Credit: Helen Maybanks

Open now – 27 July

Slapstick, silliness and stars, what’s not to love about Noises Off?

This new production stars BAFTA nominee Meera Syal (The Kumars At No. 42), Lloyd Owen (Cleaning Up, ITV) and Daniel Rigby (a Best Actor BAFTA winner for BBC Two’s Eric & Ernie).

The show follows the off-stage (and sometimes on-stage) antics of a group of actors and backstage crew, as they all desperately try and put on a production. From a hectic dress rehearsal where everything goes wrong to the backstage dramas during a performance, this farcical show has been hailed as one of the great British stage comedies.

 

Only Fools And Horses The Musical

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Open now – Booking until 8 February 2020

Stick a pony in their pocket, they’ll fetch the suitcase from the van, cos if you want the best ones but don’t ask questions, then brother, they’re your men.

Starring in Only Fools And Horses The Musical is comedy legend Paul Whitehouse as Grandad. As well as performing in the show, Paul also co-wrote and co-produced the show with Jim Sullivan,  the son of the TV show’s original creator, the late, great John Sullivan.

The iconic role of wheeling, dealing Del Boy is taken on by Tom Bennett. No stranger to a comedic role, Tom has previously starred in the hit TV show, PhoneShop, as well as the comedy film, David Brent: Life on the Road.

 

Present Laughter

Andrew Scott in Present Laughter (Photo: Manuel Harlan)

Andrew Scott in Present Laughter (Photo: Manuel Harlan)

Open now – 10 August

From a priest in Fleabag to the ultimate bad guy in BBC’s Sherlock, Andrew Scott has been stealing the hearts from TV audiences for many years now.

And now he’s ready to capture the hearts of West End audiences in the semi-autobiographical Noel Coward play, Present Laughter.

Andrew plays a successful yet eccentric actor with a busy love life, who’s bordering on a mid-life crisis. Comic events unfold while he prepares to embark on a touring commitment in Africa, and people keep coming into his home to create more drama for him.

The show also stars Olivier Award winner Sophie Thompson. A highly acclaimed actress, Sophie has had roles in many major films including Four Weddings and a Funeral as well as Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

 

Rosmersholm

Hayley Atwell & Tom Burke in Rosmersholm (Photo: Stuart Chorley, Design: Bob King Creative)

Open now – 20 July

What do you get if you mix actors from the Marvel universe, A Musketeer and an Olivier-Award winning singer from Hamilton? You get Rosmersholm, a dark period drama that will have you on the edge of your seats.

Hayley Atwell (Agent Peggy Carter in the Marvel universe) stars as Rebecca West, a woman who’s lived in the Rosmersholm mansion for some time, after befriending the home’s owner, John Rosmer.

Played by Tom Burke (BBC’s The Musketeers), John Rosmer is a priest who’s lost his faith following the unexpected suicide of his wife.

While Giles Terera (Hamilton, West End), plays Andreas Kroll, John’s brother-in-law who sees the power that the Rosmer has, and wishes him to use it for political advantage.

An Ibsen masterpiece, the show is set around political turmoil. While the press finds hidden secrets and gossip floods the headlines, the Rosmersholm estate needs to find its identity and choose a path.

 

School Of Rock – The Musical

Noel Sullivan as Dewey Finn in School Of Rock - The Musical (Photo: Craig Sugden)

Open now – Booking until 5 Jan 2020

There’s a new teacher starting at the School Of Rock that you might just recognise. From 19 August, singer and actor Noel Sullivan will be playing Dewey Finn, the wannabe rock and roll star who stumbles into substitute teaching.

Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Olivier Award-winning stage adaptation of the hilarious Jack Black film has had West End audiences rocking out for nearly three years and features songs from the original movie as well as 14 brand new tracks.

 

The Son

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24 August – 2 November

Andrew Scott isn’t the only actor from BBC’s Sherlock to be in Theatreland this summer, Amanda Abbington (who played Mary Morstan) is appearing in The Son.

Nicolas is caught in the middle of his parents’ divorce. Hurt and confused, Nicolas starts bunking off school and lying in a desperate attempt to move in with his dad. But he soon changes his mind and longs to return to his mum (played by Amanda), as the show starts to explore Nicolas’s feelings of changing his world in order to survive.

Marking the end of Florian Zeller’s spectacular trilogy of shows (previous shows were The Father and The Mother), The Son is transferring to the West End for a limited time only. Although don’t worry if you haven’t seen Florian’s earlier shows, as each production has a separate storyline.

 

The Starry Messenger

The Starry Messenger tickets at Wyndham's Theatre

Open now – 10 August

The world of Hollywood meets the quintessentially British with the cast of this show.

The Starry Messenger is the West End debut of Tony Award-winning actor Matthew Broderick and Golden Globe nominee, Downton Abbey’s Elizabeth McGovern.

The show is the story of an astronomer at New York City’s Planetarium (played by Matthew), who’s trying to find his place in the universe. Although this isn’t a new show for Matthew, as he’s actually reprising his role from the Off-Broadway run.

 

A Very Expensive Poison

Reece Shearsmith and Tom Brooke will star in A Very Expensive Poison at The Old Vic.

19 August – 28 September

Based on a true story that’s full of layered subterfuge and deadly revenge, A Very Expensive Poison stars Tom Brooke (The Boat That Rocked, Sherlock, The Bodyguard), MyAnna Buring (The Twilight Saga) and Reece Shearsmith (The League Of Gentlemen, Psychoville).

Based on Luke Harding’s remarkable investigation into the infamous case, this world premiere production will tell the tale of Alexander Litvinenko’s shocking assassination in London.

 

Waitress

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Open now – Booking until 7 December 2019

Baking up a delicious cast at the Adelphi Theatre is Waitress.

The show stars Lucie Jones (X Factor) as Jenna, a diner waitress who’s stuck in an unhappy marriage. Just as she’s close to getting out, she discovers she’s pregnant. With the help of her friends, the customers and her new doctor, can Jenna find the recipe for success?

The show also stars Ashley Roberts (Pussycat Dolls) as Dawn, the waitress looking for love, and Blake Harrison (The Inbetweeners) as her admirer, Ogie.

 

But even when summer ends, the star-studded casts don’t go away. On their way into Theatreland in September are:

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9 to 5 the musical a very expensive poison bitter wheat casting dark sublime everybody's talking about jamie fiddler on the roof here come the boys joseph and the amazing technicolor dreamcoat napoli brooklyn noises off only fools and horses the musical present laughter rosmersholm school of rock the actor's nightmare The Girl On The Train The Illusionists the lehman trilogy the night of the iguana the son the starry messenger waitress

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