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Shrek closes on 24 Feb, Charlie moves Chocolate Factory to Drury Lane

[email protected]_TICKETS/[email protected]_TICKETSAs previously tipped, Shrek The Musical will close at the West End’s Theatre Royal Drury Lane, giving its final performance on Sunday 24 February 2013. It makes way for another Neal Street co-production, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, which had been slated for the London Palladium.

The musical of Roald Dahl’s children’s classic Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, directed by Neal Street founder and former Donmar Warehouse artistic director Sam Mendes, will now premiere at Drury Lane in June 2013, following previews from 18 May.

First seen on Broadway in 2008, Shrek had its West End premiere at Drury Lane on 14 June 2011 (previews from 6 May 2011 and a lengthy get-in). Commenting on it’s closure, Bill Damaschke from Dreamworks Theatricals, said: “When we moved in to Theatre Royal, Drury Lane in March 2011, we knew that it would be the perfect home for Shrek The Musical and so it has proved to be. Joining an illustrious list of new musicals that have played this venue is a source of pride for me personally, and for the whole transatlantic team that works on the show every day.

“Of course, it is not without sadness that we have decided to leave next year, but it is some consolation that Sam Mendes and Caro Newling, our producing partners at Neal Street Productions, will retain the lease of this remarkable building. At DreamWorks Theatricals our attention turns to planning a UK tour of Shrek The Musical in 2014, the introduction to the UK of Madagascar Live!, and our live arena tour of How to Train Your Dragon, which we plan to bring to the UK in late 2013.”

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory centres on the mysterious Willy Wonka, who is opening his Chocolate Factory for just one day, and the humble boy Charlie Bucket for whom it promises to be a mouth-watering chance to feast his eyes on sweets beyond his wildest imagination.

The musical has a book by David Greig and new songs from Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman, whose credits include the Tony Award-winning Hairspray.

Charlie will be the second Dahl adaptation playing in London with the RSC’s multi award-winning Matilda the Musical continuing at the Cambridge Theatre.