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Matilda bumps Chicago out of Cambridge

First Published 19 May 2011, Last Updated 19 May 2011

Dates and venue have been confirmed for the London transfer of the Royal Shakespeare Company production of Roald Dahl’s Matilda. The musical, which has a score by Australian comedian and musician Tim Minchin, will open at the Cambridge theatre on 22 November after previews from 18 October.

The announcement means that long-running show Chicago, which has been resident at the Cambridge theatre since 2006, will be packing its bags on 27 August. However the musical, which originated at the Adelphi theatre in 1997, may yet find a third West End home. A statement released by the producers said: “We are hopeful that Chicago’s record breaking 14-year run in the West End will continue.”

Matilda, which is adapted for the stage by playwright Dennis Kelly and directed by Matthew Warchus, began life in Stratford-Upon-Avon last Christmas, going on to collect the Critics’ Circle Theatre Award for Best Musical.

The show recreates Dahl’s 1988 story of a young girl who is ignored by her parents and terrorised by her primary school’s monstrous headteacher. When Matilda discovers she has a very special power, she decides it is time the grown-ups were taught a lesson.
 
Many of the cast from the Stratford run will transfer to London with the production, including London stage regular Bertie Carvel (Parade, Pride, Rope) as child-hating headmistress Miss Trunchbull, and Paul Kaye and Josie Walker as Matilda’s parents Mr and Mrs Wormwood.

A search is currently underway to find four young actresses to alternate in the role of Matilda, along with three teams of nine children to play her fellow pupils.

Booking for Matilda opens this weekend for initial performances to 12 February.

CB

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