Sheila Hancock, the Laurence Olivier Award-winning stage and screen actress, has extended her run in the stage adaptation of the hit London musical Sister Act. She will continue playing the Mother Superior until 27 February 2010.
Speaking about her decision, Hancock said: “When, at the age of 76, I was asked to appear in Sister Act at the London Palladium, I thought I might just about manage six months. It has proved such a joyous experience, I have a new lease of life, and am pleased to stay for longer. The music, the hugely talented cast, the fabulous set and costumes and the fun yet serious underlying message of the show evokes the most ecstatic audience reaction I have ever known in my 60plus year career. Why would I walk away from that? My job is to entertain and that is what this show does; the audiences are diverse and huge and I feel proud to be part of it – despite my aching bones.”
Hancock, whose credits include Bedtime, Bleak House and The Bed-Sit Girl, leads the cast alongside former EastEnder Ian Lavendar and American leading lady Patina Miller.
Sister Act, which features a score by Alan Menken, follows Deloris Van Cartier, a Las Vegas lounge singer who, after witnessing a murder, is placed in a convent for her own protection. Far from blending into her surroundings, she is soon leaving her mark on the nuns and, in particular, their choir.
The stage adaptation of the Golden Globe-nominated Whoopi Goldberg film has recently extended its run at the London Palladium, where its tuneful nuns have been raising the roof since May.