A year after closing at the Aldwych Theatre to make way for Dirty Dancing (See News, 24 Feb 2006), Runar Borge’s stage version of another dance-based Eighties screen classic, Fame, will return to London. It opens on 8 May 2007 (previews from 4 May) for a limited summer season at the Shaftesbury Theatre, its fifth West End home.

Based on Alan Parker's 1980 Oscar-winning film and the American TV series of the same name, Fame follows a group of students from New York’s School for the Performing Arts through the highs, lows, friendships, romances and hard work necessary in their quest for success.

Fame first opened in the West End at the Cambridge Theatre in 1995, when it was nominated for two Laurence Olivier Awards for Best New Musical and Best Choreography. It returned in 1998 for a run at the Prince of Wales Theatre. The musical's last West End run began in October 2000 at the Victoria Palace (its second outing at that venue, where it also played in 1997) before transferring back to the Cambridge in September 2001 and then to the Aldwych in 2002.

With its on and off appearances in the West End and ongoing tours - How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria?’s Abi Finley stars in the 2007 regional tour, which will continue to run concurrently with the new West End production, directed by Karen Bruce (See News, 30 Nov 2006) - Fame has now been seen by more than 4 million people in the UK and ten million worldwide.

The Shaftesbury has just gone dark this weekend with the closure of Boney M compilation musical Daddy Cool, which had a six month run and now embarks on an international tour (See News, 12 Jan 2007).

- by Terri Paddock