Thursday Theatre News: Julie Atherton, Tim Curry, Steven Webb and Justin Lee Collins

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If you’re in town on Sunday 26 June, you’re in luck! West End star Julie Atherton will be performing a one-off solo concert at the Apollo Theatre that night.

The former Avenue Q actress will sing tracks from her latest album No Space For Air as well as tunes from the shows that shaped her musical theatre career, like Mamma Mia!, Fame, The Last 5 Years and Ordinary Days. Helping her out will be Daniel Boys – who Atherton starred alongside in Avenue Q and Ordinary Days – and Richard Fleeshman, who’ll soon be starring as Sam in Ghost The Musical.

I have two exciting bits of cast news for you this week: comedian Justin Lee Collins is to play ageing hippy and bar owner Dennis Dupree in the forthcoming 80s jukebox musical Rock of Ages. Did you see his 2009 performance as Mr Cellophane in Chicago when it was on his Sky show JLC Is…? I thought it was great, and think he’ll love the chance to get on stage in the West End a second time.

Secondly, Steven Webb has joined the cast of comedy musical Betwixt! at the Trafalgar Studios next month. You might’ve seen Steven in: Departure Lounge at Waterloo East Theatre, The History Boys in the West End, The Long Road at Soho Theatre and Public Property at Trafalgar Studios. He also played Dick Whittington at the Lyric Hammersmith last Christmas. 

Sad news now, about Tim Curry having to leave the upcoming production of Tom Stoppard’s Rosencrantz And Guildenstern Are Dead, which open at the Theatre Royal Haymarket later this month.

I was so excited about seeing The Rocky Horror Picture Show star (and he’s in Annie! and It! and my favourite, Mr Boddy in Clue!), but it’s not going to happen. According to an official statement, an “on-going chest infection and repeated asthma attacks” led to Curry leaving the production, which is currently playing in Chichester ahead of its West End opening. For now, Chris Andrew Mellon is playing the Player, alongside Samuel Barnett and Jamie Parker in the title roles, while the directors “consider longer-term options.” I’ll obviously keep you posted.


  1. Jolie says:

    I share your appreciation of Tim Curry, Zoe. However, in the movie Clue, Curry played the character of Wadsworth and Lee Ving played Mr. Boddy.

    • Zoe J. Griffiths says:

      Ah, that’s so funny. You’re right of course. I think I just remember Tim Curry’s distinctive, sinister pronunciation of “M’ister Bboddddy” so clearly, I thought he played the part too! My sister and I used to love that film so much when we were little. We still call Tim Curry “M’ister Bodddy-y” as a result, hence my confusion :-)

      • Jolie says:

        I understand completely. We have a German Shorthaired pointer who reminds me of the dog Goliath from the old stop-motion animation children’s show Davey & Goliath. But because the dog always called his boy’s name “Daaaa-vey,” I named him Davey (and pronounce it the same way at times, too).