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Lordy there’s been some news in the past few weeks, what with Sir Cameron Mackintosh announcing that he’s purchasing and refurbishing the Victoria Palace and Ambassadors Theatres. While it makes the long term futures of Billy Elliot the Musical and Stomp a little uncertain, it has to be good news for the theatres moving forward.
Another earth-mover on the news front is that Matilda the Musical director Matthew Warchus will be the man to succeed Kevin Spacey when the Hollywood star steps down as Old Vic Artistic Director in 2015. Warchus has awards and experience aplenty, so the appointment has been met with nods and approval all round.
But what of the shows?
Well, some old West End favourites are returning. In July, Beatles extravaganza Let It Be is back for a summer season at the Garrick Theatre where, from August, it will be joined by family favourite Horrible Histories Barmy Britain Part Two. So beheadings by day and head wobbling in the evenings.
Also back, a little later in the year, is the Olivier Award nominated Eric And Little Ern, which brings its tale of Morecambe and Wise to the St James Theatre this Christmas. As well as returners, there are a handful of transfers.
Park Theatre hit Daytona, which stars The Simpsons’ and This Is Spinal Tap’s Harry Shearer and British stage and screen star Maureen Lipman, moves to the Theatre Royal Haymarket from 30 June. Written by and co-starring Oliver Cotton, it’s the tale of a couple whose love is clear even after 50 years together. The arrival of a long lost family member brings a new story into their lives.
Almeida hit King Charles III, which imagines a future in which Prince Charles has become king, also transfers into the West End, playing at the Wyndham’s Theatre this autumn, while hit children’s show Hetty Feather makes a move to the Vaudeville Theatre this summer.