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Musicals Extend: Wizard, Mamma Mia! & Thriller Live

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Andrew Lloyd Webber's production of {The Wizard of Oz::L742333065} has extended its booking period at the London Palladium to 28 October 2012.

The Wizard of Oz, best known from the 1939 Hollywood film starring Judy Garland, has been  reconceived and includes new songs written by Lloyd Webber and lyricist Tim Rice.

The production is helmed by the same creative team behind Lloyd Webber’s Whatsonstage.com Award-winning revival of The Sound of Music starring his first reality TV winner Connie Fisher – director Jeremy Sams, designer Robert Jones and choreographer Arlene Phillips.

The cast currently features Over the Rainbow winner Danielle Hope as Dorothy, Michael Crawford as the Wizard (to 5 February 2012), Marianne Benedict as the Wicked Witch Of The West, and Edward Baker-Duly (Tin Man), David Ganly (Lion), Paul Keating (Scarecrow) and Emily Tierney (Glinda).

Mamma Mia! has extended its booking period at the Prince of Wales Theatre through to 20 October 2012, taking the show through to its 14th year.

Based on the songs of ABBA, Mamma Mia! opened at the Prince Edward Theatre on 6 April 1999 (previews from 23 March), transferring to its current home at the Prince of Wales on 3 June 2004. The show has grossed over $2 billion worldwide and was immortalised on film in 2008 with Meryl Streep, Pierce Brosnan and Colin Firth.

The West End cast is currently led by Sally Ann Triplett as Donna Sheridan, Joanna Monro as Rosie and Kim Ismay as Tanya, with William Tapley (Sam Carmichael), Oliver Senton (Harry Bright), Mark Gillis (Bill Austin), Dani De Waal (Sophie Sheridan), Craig Fletcher (Sky), Hannah Fairclough (Ali), Rachel Sargent (Lisa), Warren Sollars (Pepper) and Alex Jessop (Eddie).

Finally, Thriller Live!, the tribute show to late pop singer Michael Jackson, has announced another extension to its run at the Lyric Theatre, and is now taking booking up until 23 September 2012.

Billed as a concert show, Thriller Live includes Michael Jackson and Jackson 5 chart-toppers such as “I Want You Back”, “I’ll Be There”, “Earth Song”, “Blame It on the Boogie”, “Billie Jean”, “Beat It” and, of course, the title song, “Thriller”, from best-selling albums including Off The Wall, Thriller, Bad, Dangerous and HIStory.

The show is directed by Gary Lloyd and written by Adrian Grant, with design by Jonathan Park. The cast is led by three 13-year olds who rotate in the role of Young Michael. It is produced by Paul Walden and Derek Nicol for Flying Music in association with Adrian Grant for Key Concerts.


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