The show, which was originally staged at Northampton's Royal and Derngate, includes some of Garland's best-known songs, including "Get Happy", "The Man That Got Away" and "Somewhere Over the Rainbow".
TO SCROLL THROUGH ALL OF THE END OF THE RAINBOW’s 1st NIGHT PHOTOS,
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PHOTOS BY DAN WOOLLER FOR WHATSONSTAGE.COM.
End of the Rainbow had its world premiere in July 2005 at Sydney Opera House and proved a sell-out hit there and in Melbourne. That production was led by Australian Caroline O'Connor, who recently staged her one-woman show Showgirl at London's Garrick Theatre, reprising her performance for the show’s UK premiere at the Edinburgh Fringe festival in August 2006.
Bennett isn’t a stranger to the role. She appeared in an earlier incarnation of Quilter’s play at London’s New End Theatre in 2001, when it ran under the title of The Last Song of the Nightingale and the American diva was unnamed though a thinly disguised version of Garland. Quilter’s other credits include the Boyband and Glorious!, both of which also had West End seasons.
The production is designed by William Dudley, with sound by Gareth Owen, lighting by Simon Corder and musical direction by Gareth Valentine. It’s presented in the West End by Lee Dean, Jenny Topper, Laurence Myers, Charles Diamond and Hilary Williams in association with Royal & Derngate, Northampton.