X Factor’s Niki Evans will star in the much coveted leading role of Mrs Johnstone in Willy Russell’s musical Blood Brothers when it arrives at The Mayflower, Southampton from 27 September – 9 October 2010.

Mum of two Niki Evans, from Birmingham, won the hearts of millions as one of the most popular female artists ever to appear in the X Factor in 2007 with her extraordinary renditions of such songs as Fields of Gold, Songbird, and All That Jazz.

Niki has previously played Mrs Johnstone in the West End in 2008, and is currently reprising the role once more in the West End prior to joining the tour in the autumn.

The celebrated role of Mrs Johnstone has been played by such well-known actresses as Stephanie Lawrence, Clodagh Rodgers, Kiki Dee, Lyn Paul, Siobhan McCarthy, and four of the Nolan sisters (Linda, Bernie, Denise and Maureen).

Blood Brothers has been running in the West End since July 1988. In the USA, it has had a record-breaking Broadway run, a hugely successful coast-to-coast tour, and was nominated for seven Tony Awards. Telling the captivating and moving story of twin boys separated at birth, only to be reunited by a twist of fate and a mother’s haunting secret, the memorable score includes A Bright New Day, Marilyn Monroe and the emotionally charged hit Tell Me It’s Not True.