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Sister Act brings forward closing date

Lizzie Guilfoyle

SISTER Act, which was booking at the London Palladium until January 1, 2011, will now close on October 30, 2010. However, as well as various international productions, there are plans for a Broadway opening in spring 2011 and a UK tour the following autumn. It’s also hoped that the production will find a new West End home.

Talking about the show’s movements, Bill Taylor, CEO of producers Stage Entertainment UK & USA, said: “Forgive the pun but we’ve had a truly heavenly time at the Palladium! It was always the deal with the Really Useful Group that we would leave to make way for The Wizard of Oz and I want to thank every single person who has been involved in making Sister Act such a success there.

“It has given us the perfect springboard for launching this uplifting show around the world, establishing Sister Act as a wonderful new musical title with global potential. We’re all very excited about the next few years and the prospect of the show running in different cities, from our new London home, to Broadway and Hamburg and beyond. It’s going to be a busy few years for Deloris Van Cartier and her sisters!”

Although The Wizard of Oz is not scheduled to begin performances until March 29, 2011, no production has been announced for the interim period.

Previously Posted: On May 31, 2010, former Blue member Simon Webbe will take over the role of Curtis Shank, the bad-boy lover of Deloris Van Cartier, in the musical Sister Act, which has just posted closing notices at the London Palladium for January 1, 2011.

Patina Miller, who created the role of Deloris on stage, will stay with the production until it completes its run. And Sheila Hancock (Mother Superior), who is currently a judge on Over the Rainbow, has extended her contract until the end of August.

Sister Act centres around disco diva Deloris who, after witnessing a mob-related murder, is put in protective custody – in a convent. Disguised as a nun, she finds herself at odds with both the rigid lifestyle and an up tight Mother Superior.

Using her unique disco moves and singing talent to inspire the choir, Deloris breaths new life into the church and community, but in doing so blows her cover. Soon the gang is giving chase only to find them up against Deloris and the power of her new found Sister Hood.

Webbe, who will be making his West End debut in Sister Act, has released two solo albums since leaving Blue and is currently working on a third. He has also appeared on numerous television shows, including series eight of I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!, as well as the films The Truth About Love and Rolling With The Nines.

Other new cast members joining from May 31 include Jacqueline Clarke (as Sister Mary Lazarus) and ensemble members Lauren Appleby, Kiara Jay, Rachel John, Aaron Lee Lambert, Ellie Leah, Amanda Minihan, Grant Murphy, Nathaniel Morrison, Ashley Russell and Carrie Sutton.

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Andrew Lloyd Webber’s forthcoming revival of The Wizard of Oz, starring the winner of BBC’s Over the Rainbow, is scheduled to start performances at the London Palladium on March 29, 2011.