Denise Van Outen is to play Maureen in the new production of Rent which opens at the Duke Of York’s on 16 October (previews from 2 October).
The television presenter and actress first became famous co-hosting The Big Breakfast with Johnny Vaughan, but has since found success onstage. As a child, Van Outen played young Eponine in Les Misérables and also performed with the Royal Shakespeare Company in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. More recently she played Roxie Hart in Chicago both in the West End and on Broadway, and starred in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s one woman show Tell Me On A Sunday at the Gielgud and then on national tour. Her association with West End theatre continued with her appearance as a panellist on Any Dream Will Do, the televised search for a star for Joseph And The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.
Rent, the story of a group of young New Yorker’s struggling to achieve their dreams in the face of reality, was first seen in London in 1998 at the Shaftesbury, before opening again in 2001 at the Prince Of Wales. For this new production, the musical has been reworked and re-orchestrated by William Baker and Steve Anderson, who are the producer and musical director for Kylie Minogue, and given a new contemporary edge.
Van Outen joins a cast that includes former Sugababe Siobhan Donaghy as Mimi, Luke Evans as Roger, Oliver Thornton as Mark, Leon Lopez as Collins, Jay Webb playing Angel, Francesca Jackson as Joanne and Craig Stein as Benny, in addition to Ruth Augilera, Jamie Sampson, Antony Luperi, Earl Perkins, Lewis Griffiths and Philippa Stefani. Design is by Mark Bailey, with lighting by David Howe and sound by Sebastian Frost.