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Alex Jennings to play Willy Wonka in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

Alex Jennings: Picture by Marcus Dawes-REX

Story by Jack Foley

ALEX Jennings will play Willy Wonka in the record-breaking West End production of Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, the role currently played by Douglas Hodge.

Jennings’s first performance will be on Monday, May 19, 2014.

Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory has quickly become one of the West End’s most popular and successful stage musicals. It has broken records at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane, where it has been seen by over half a million people since it opened in June 2013. It is currently taking bookings until May 30, 2015.

Jennings is the only performer to have won an Olivier Award in the Drama, Musical and Comedy categories, winning Best Actor for Peer Gynt (1996), Best Actor in a Musical for My Fair Lady (2003), and Best Comedy Performance for Too Clever By Half (1988).

He is an Associate at the National Theatre and the RSC and has had a wide and varied career on stage, screen and radio. In 2008, he made his operatic debut in Bernstein’s Candide.

Jennings’ credits at the National Theatre include Untold Stories (West End), The Habit of Art, Stuff Happens, The Winter’s Tale and The Relapse.

He is an Associate Actor at the RSC, where his credits include Hamlet, Peer Gynt and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Other theatre includes The Liar, The Wild Duck, The Importance of Being Earnest and The Country Wife.

His screen career includes The Queen, Smiley’s People, Hancock and Joan and Cranford.

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is directed by Sam Mendes. Featuring ingenious stagecraft, the wonder of the original story that has captivated the world for almost 50 years is brought to life with music by Marc Shaiman, and lyrics by Scott Wittman and Marc Shaiman, a book by award-winning playwright and adaptor David Greig, set and costume designs by Mark Thompson and choreography by Peter Darling.

The Official Cast Recording album is available on Sony Records, on CD and download.