Spice Girls musical Viva Forever!, which premiered at the Piccadilly Theatre in December, will close on 29 June 2013, after just six months in the West End.In a press statement released this morning, producer Judy Craymer said that the decision to close the show had been made with a "heavy heart". She added: "The show has evolved since we first opened and is now brighter, lighter and funnier, but despite the wonderful audiences and extremely positive feedback we just can't make it work."With a book by Jennifer Saunders, the story centres on Viva (Hannah John-Kamen), her mum (Sally Ann Triplett) and her friends whose lives are turned upside down by an X Factor-style talent show. The score features Spice Girls hits such as "Wannabe", "2 Become 1", "Spice Up Your Life" and "Goodbye".
The Spice Girls said in a joint statement: "We want to thank the cast and all the fans for their support, and although Viva Forever! won't continue in the West End we are thrilled that the thousands of people who came to the show had as much fun as we did." Mel B, Mel C, Jennifer Saunders, Geri Halliwell, Judy Craymer, Emma Bunton & Victoria Beckham at the launch of Viva Forever! Cast members were told of the closure last night; Anthony Topham and Ben Cura confirmed the news via Twitter. Topham tweeted, "Cut price Gerrard Butler type who can do a Geordie accent for hire! Viva Forever! given its notice and will close 29 June." Emma Bunton tweeted: "I am totally gutted that our wonderful show Viva Forever! is coming to an end. Thank you to all our amazing fans for your constant support!"Ben Cura & Hannah John-Kamen in Viva Forever! Despite a huge publicity drive Viva Forever! was panned by critics when it opened on 11 December. Whatsonstage.com's Michael Coveney called Saunders' book "totally un-theatrical" and "completely un-satirical". By closing after just six months Viva Forever!, which had been booking until February 2014, has reportedly made a loss of over £5 million.It's directed by Paul Garrington and choreographed by Lynne Page. Craymer, who made her name producing smash hit ABBA musical Mamma Mia!, also added: "I'm so proud of everyone involved in this production. Viva Forever! may be taking its leave for now in the West End but the legacy of the Spice Girls will never fade."Ticket holders for performances after 29 June are advised to contact their point of sale.
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