Amongst the major shows opening in London this week are:

OPENING TONIGHT, Monday 27 September 2004 (previews from 22 September), The Solid Gold Cadillac pulls up to the West End’s Garrick Theatre. After a medical scare on the show’s brief pre-London tour (See News, 9 Sep 2004), a recovered Roy Hudd is back in the driving seat, alongside Patricia Routledge, in this 50th anniversary revival of George S Kaufman and Howard Teichman’s 1953 Broadway comedy about a retired actress who tackles corporate greed. West Yorkshire Playhouse artistic director Ian Brown directs.

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ALSO TONIGHT, Singular Sensations, the six-week season of music and cabaret at the West End's Theatre Royal Haymarket continues with West End favourite Michael Ball, who runs until 9 October. Performing together, classical pianist Joshua Rifkin and soprano Ida Faiella conclude the schedule from 10 to 16 October 2004.


OPENING TUESDAY, 28 September 2004 (previews from 16 September), the British premiere of Dutch playwright Maria Goos’ Cloaca launches the Kevin Spacey’s reign as artistic director of the West End’s new-style Old Vic (See News, 22 Apr 2004). Four lifelong friends – played by Hugh Bonneville, Neil Pearson, Stephen Tompkinson and Adrian Lukis - are reunited in middle age; their lives finely balanced between hope and disillusion. Spacey himself directs the production which has a strictly limited season to 11 December 2004.

ALSO TONIGHT, the Tobacco Factory opens its production of Thomas Middleton and William Rowley’s The Changeling at the Barbican Pit following a run earlier this year at its Bristol base. The Jacobean play runs in repertory, until 23 October 2004, alongside the company’s production of Macbeth, which opened last week. Both productions are directed by company artistic director Andrew Hilton.


OPENING WEDNESDAY, 29 September 2004 (previews from 18 September), at the National, is Buried Child, the first major London production of Sam Shepard’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play in over 20 years (See News, 15 Jul 2004). Americans M Emmet Walsh, Elizabeth Franz and Six Feet Under’s Lauren Ambrose make their UK stage debuts, alongside British cast members including Sam Troughton and Olivier Award winner Brendan Coyle, in Shepard’s ferocious 1978 comedy about a curious homecoming for a forgotten son. It runs in repertory in the NT Lyttelton up to 15 December 2004.

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ALSO ON WEDNESDAY, the stage adaptation of Michael Morpugo’s 2003 children’s novel, Private Peaceful, comes to Soho Theatre after runs in Bristol and at the Edinburgh Festival (See News, 19 Aug 2004). The one-man show – adapted and directed by Bristol Old Vic joint artistic director Simon Reade and performed by Paul Chequer - tells the heart-wrenching story of Tommo, a young First World War soldier awaiting the firing squad at dawn. It runs until 10 October 2004.


OPENING THURSDAY, 30 September 2004 (previews from 24 September), at the National, is another one-man show, this one about the real-life Auschwitz survivor and author Primo Levi (See News, 15 Jul 2004). Primo is performed by Antony Sher, who has also adapted the piece from the late Levi’s own book , If This Is a Man. Primo is directed by actor-director Richard Wilson and continues in repertory at the NT Cottesloe until 1 December 2004 (previews from 24 September).

- by Terri Paddock