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After a four-year gap, West End Eurovision returns to the capital

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

AFTER a four year gap, the legendary charity production West End Eurovision is returning to the capital and this year, it will be staged in the heart of London’s Theatreland – at the Shaftesbury Theatre on Sunday, April 22, 2018.

There will be a sea of flags and the most outrageous costumes as the casts of some of Theatreland’s biggest shows battle it out to be crowned the champions of West End Eurovision, to raise funds for the Make A Difference Trust.

Eight of the West End’s top musicals will be competing against each other by singing original Eurovision Song Contest songs to win text votes from the audience and the approval of a panel of celebrity judges and judges from each competing show.

The casts will be giving their all to lift three coveted West End Eurovision 2018 Trophies — The Champions, The Best Ident Movie and The Best Creative.

West End Eurovision will also feature a special guest appearance by a past original Eurovision Song Contest entrant. Previous performances have included: Scooch, Nicki French, Bardo, Javine Hylton, The Original Bucks Fizz, Sonia and Katrina Leskanich (Katrina and the Waves).

This interactive charity event will once again raise funds for the Make A Difference Trust. Since the first contest was staged in 2008, the event has raised thousands to support the MAD Trust. The Trust works with its partners to support HIV and AIDS projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa building awareness and providing care support and education.

Ahead of the real 63rd annual Eurovision Song Contest in Lisbon, Portugal on Saturday, May 12, the eight West End shows competing in West End Eurovision 2018 are:

42nd Street
Aladdin
Dreamgirls
Hamilton
Kinky Boots
Mamma Mia!
The Phantom of the Opera
Young Frankenstein

The last West End Eurovision held in 2014 saw Les Misérables named joint winners with Mamma Mia! Les Misérables (with Sir Cameron Mackintosh making a guest appreareance on film dressed as an airline pilot) performed Flying the Flag (For You) Scooch’s song, which came 22nd for the UK in 2007, while Mamma Mia! performed Waterloo, ABBA’s winning Swedish Eurovision song from 1974.

A spokesman for the Make A Difference Trust, said: “We are grateful to all our talented performers and guests for helping us to make West End Eurovision happen again. This high camp, fun event will raise such a lot of money for the projects we support. We are thrilled to return West End Eurovision once again to the West End… for one unforgettable performance and one night only!”

Tickets for this year’s West End Eurovision are priced from £43.20 and are available from the box office on 020 7379 5399 or online at www.shaftesburytheatre.com/shows/west-end-eurovision/.

£100 VIP ticket includes: Top-price seat, souvenir programme, pre-show reception with VIP access to the theatre, an interval drink. VIP tickets are only available directly from The Make A Difference Trust using this link: www.madtrust.org.uk/event/west-end-eurovision-2018/.

Time: 7pm.