Feature by Lizzie Guilfoyle
ON SEPTEMBER 4, 2005, after three and a half years in London's
West End, the musical Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
is to close. But it's not all bad news - from June 21 until the
show's final curtain, the role of Caractacus Potts will again
be played by Jason Donovan.
The £6.2 million production which premiered at the Palladium
on April 16, 2002, is the theatre's longest running show. To date,
it has been seen by more than three million people and taken over
£70 million at the box office.
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
is based on the famous 1968 children's film and follows the adventures
of happy-go-lucky inventor Caractacus Potts, his two children
and Truly Scrumptious, as they try to outwit the eerie Childcatcher
and a highly-strung Baron who will stop at nothing to get his
hands on Potts' amazing flying car.
The production currently stars Brian Conley and Alvin Stardust
as Caractacus and the Childcatcher.
Though grounded in London, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang took
off at New York's Hilton Theatre (formerly the Ford Center for
the Performing Arts) on April 28 this year and, only last week,
was nominated for five of this year's Tony Awards.
And a UK tour kicks off at Sunderland Empire on December 9, 2005.