On the eve of its 1000th performance at the Palace Theatre, Priscilla Queen of the Desert the Musical has confirmed it will close on 31 December 2011.

The show, which has been running in the West End since March 2009, is adapted from the Oscar-winning film Priscilla Queen of the Desert, chronicling the adventures of Sydney drag queen Mitzi (aka Tick) and her two fish-out-of-water friends, Felicia and transsexual Bernadette, who head west across the desert to Alice Springs in their battered old bus.

The West End cast is currently led by Richard Grieve as Tick, Don Gallagher as Bernadette and Whatsonstage.com Award winner Oliver Thornton as Adam. Next month Ray Meagher, best known on television for playing Alf Stewart in the long running Australian soap Home and Away, will re-join the West End cast as mechanic Bob.

Priscilla had its world premiere in Sydney in October 2006 and subsequently toured to Melbourne and New Zealand. After a return Sydney season and a recent run in Toronto, in March this year the Broadway production opened at the Palace Theatre in New York, winning a Tony Award for Best Costume Design.

Further international dates are planned for Italy and Brazil. According to press material, “discussions are also taking place regarding other international territories including Scandinavia, Germany and Asia”.

For the stage version, members of the original film’s creative team – writer and director Stephan Elliott, costume designers Lizzy Gardiner and Tim Chappel, make-up designer Cassie Hanlon and producer Michael Hamlyn – were joined by theatre director Simon Phillips. The West End production is presented by Liz Koops and Garry McQuinn for Back Row Productions, Michael Hamlyn for Specific Films, Allan Scott and the Really Useful Theatre Company.