Two Award-nominated productions, both of which were due to finish their West End seasons on 15 January 2005, have announced final extensions. At the New Ambassadors, Stephen Sondheim’s musical thriller Sweeney Todd has added three weeks to 5 February, and at the Duke of York’s, Journey's End, has added a further five weeks to 19 February.

The 25th anniversary revival of Sondheim’s modern classic Sweeney Todd was first seen at Newbury’s 216-seat Watermill Theatre in February 2004, prior to a tour and transfer to the West End’s new Trafalgar Studios in July. It moved in mid-October to the New Ambassadors, where it will be followed from 10 February, by Ying Tong, Roy Smiles play about comedian Spike Milligan and the Goons (See News, 17 Dec 2004).

Directed and designed by John Doyle, the cast of nine actor-musicians is led by Paul Hegarty as the “demon barber of Fleet Street” with Karen Mann as his pie-making partner in crime, Mrs Lovett. Sweeney Todd is produced in the West End by Adam Kenwright, the Ambassador Theatre Group (ATG) and Ted Tulchin. In the Theatregoers’ Choice Awards, the show has received nominations for Best Musical Revival, Best Ensemble Performance and, for Mann, Best Actress in a Musical (click here to vote now).

The 75th anniversary revival of RC Sheriff's classic First World War play Journey's End first opened at the West End’s Comedy Theatre on 21 January 2004 (previews from 15 January), before transferring in May to the Playhouse and then on to its current home at the Duke of York’s in October.

Based on the author's own experience in the trenches of the First World War, Journey's End follows a group of officers, positioned behind British lines at St Quentin, France, and awaiting their fate.

Prior to heading back on the road on 17 January (See News, 10 Dec 2004), the touring cast, featuring Philip Franks, continues on holiday duty until 3 January after which the West End cast returns for the remainder of the London run. That company includes Malcolm Sinclair as Osborne, Brendan Patricks as Stanhope and Peter Sandys-Clarke as Raleigh.

Journey's End is directed by David Grindley and presented by Background Productions. In the Theatregoers’ Choice Awards, it has been nominated for Best Play Revival and Best Ensemble Performance (click here to vote now).

- by Terri Paddock