As previously reported, Peter Hall’s Bath Theatre Royal production of The Rivals will transfer to the West End at the conclusion of its current tour and is now confirmed to open at the Theatre Royal Haymarket on 23 November 2010 (previews from 10 November), the day before Hall's 80th birthday. It's booking until 26 February 2011.

The comedy, which stars Penelope Keith and Peter Bowles, opened in Bath earlier this month, the first production in the Theatre Royal following a two-month, £3.65 million refurbishment. Richard Brinsley Sheridan’s 1775 play is set in the fashionable society of the spa town, where a cast of extraordinary characters come to take the waters, show off their finery, indulge in gossip and pursue romance.

Penelope Keith and Peter Bowles, who famously starred together in the British sitcom To the Manor Born, play the verbally misguided Mrs Malaprop and the blinkered Sir Anthony Absolute, respectively.

The production has historical significance, in that the modern Theatre Royal Haymarket was opened on 4 July 1821 with a production of The Rivals.