The entire company of Priscilla Queen of the Desert the Musical will take a fortnight’s holiday from 6 to 19 September 2010, during which time the West End’s Palace Theatre will be dark.

Producers of the Whatsonstage.com Award-winning screen-to-stage musical will use the time for maintenance work on the show’s elaborate set, which includes a full life-sized bus. When performances resume on 20 September, the production will revert to its usual schedule of Monday to Saturday evenings at 7.30pm, with 2.30pm matinees on Thursdays and Saturdays, bringing to an end its summer schedule which includes 3pm Sunday matinees in lieu of Monday evenings.

The holiday break is thought to be a West End first. Most shows have cast members alternate their holidays, with understudies filling in for absent principals. The current Priscilla cast is led by Ben Richards (as Tick/Mitzi), Don Gallagher (Bernadette) and Whatsonstage.com Award winner Oliver Thornton

Adapted from the 1994 Oscar-winning cult Australian film starring Guy Pearce, Hugo Weaving and Terence Stamp, Priscilla follows Sydney drag queen Mitzi (aka Tick) and her two fish-out-of-water friends, Felicia (Adam) and transsexual Bernardette, as they head west across the desert to Alice Springs in their battered old bus.

Like the film, the musical is fashioned around disco hits including "I Love the Nightlife," "I Will Survive", “Shake Your Groove Thing” and "Finally". It’s directed by Simon Phillips, designed by Brian Thomson, choreography by Ross Coleman, and costumes by Tim Chappel and Lizzy Gardiner.

In this year’s Whatsonstage.com Awards, Priscilla Queen of the Desert the Musical was a four-time winner, taking home Best Set Designer, Best Choreographer, Best Supporting Actor in a Musical for Thornton and the coveted Best New Musical.