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West End warm-ups as it welcomes the world

Published 18 April 2012

100 cast members from some of the West End’s most popular shows gathered at Trafalgar Square today for a special West End warm-up to mark 100 days to the Olympics.

Staged under the iconic landmark’s Olympic clock, the event offered people planning to travel to the capital this summer a taste of the talent and energy on offer in the theatre capital of the world, as well as offering the chance for the West End to proudly welcome the world in light of what is set to be a historic summer and sensational season for London theatre.

Performers from shows including Billy Elliot The Musical, Chicago, Stomp, One Man, Two Guvnors, South Downs/The Browning Version and Shrek The Musical – who donned green ears for the performance – were put through their paces by Movement Director Polly Bennett who is currently working on the Olympic Games Opening Ceremonies.

Also in attendance were some of the Olympic Games’ most important representatives, all acting as spokespeople in support of the West End. Ruth Mackenzie, Director of Culture for LOCOG was joined by Stephen Daldry, the director of Billy Elliot and Chief Executive of the Opening Ceremonies, while What The Butler Saw star Samantha Bond and forthcoming Chicago cast member and 1980 Olympic gold medallist Robin Cousins were on hand to talk to the world press about the fantastic range of entertainment London theatre has in store this summer, making it an absolute must-see for everyone travelling to the capital.

The event was organised by the Society of London Theatre (SOLT), the company behind Official London Theatre. SOLT’s President Mark Rubinstein spoke to us at the event, saying: “Everybody coming to London should come and see a London show… it’s a unique opportunity. London is the theatre capital of the world, there is nowhere else you can see the range of shows, the plays, musicals, drama, dance that you can see in London and if you’re in London, you’d be a fool to miss that opportunity.”

Actress Bond seconded Rubinstein’s sentiments saying:  “I am here celebrating London theatre, looking forward to a summer of Olympics and Olympian audiences and it’s just been great to be a part of the West End, to be here and I hope everyone throngs to the theatre this summer. It’s one of the great richnesses that London offers. To have come all this way and not catch a few shows would be sad.”

If you are planning to see a show this summer, make sure you check out our Theatre 2012 section for helpful tips on travelling during the Olympic period, a list of all shows running over the summer and our Don’t Miss The Real Show theatrical trailer.


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