Variety has expanded this week on our recent titbit about screen-to-stage musical Desperately Seeking Susan heading to Shaftesbury Avenue this autumn (See The Goss, 1 May 2007) – tipping it for a November premiere at the Gielgud Theatre. The new musical sets the 1985 film to the greatest hits of Blondie whose lead singer Debbie Harry is, we hear, now in talks to fly over for a big media launch planned for early July. No firm casting yet, though Emma Williams (taking the title role created on screen by Madonna) and Avenue Q’s Simon Lipkin have featured in workshops, both last December and a further three-week development period which ended last Friday. Set in 1979, Desperately Seeking Susan centres on bored New Jersey housewife Roberta Glass who spots a personal ad entitled “Desperately Seeking Susan” and heads off to Manhattan in search of the exciting Susan herself. Things get complicated when, after buying Susan’s jacket, Roberta is knocked unconscious. Awaking with amnesia, she assumes she is Susan, who is also being desperately sought by the mob. In addition to Madonna, the film starred Rosanna Arquette and Aidan Quinn. Amongst the Blondie hits included in the stage version are “Hanging on the Telephone”, “The Tide Is High”, “Heart of Glass”, “Call Me”, “Rapture” and “One Way or Another”. The stage production is directed by Angus Jackson.