Some big-hitting West End shows open this week in London, including The Wizard of Oz, Million Dollar Quartet, Flare Path and Blithe Spirit.

Monday 28 February 2011

Million Dollar Quartet, the musical that recreates the historic day when Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins and Jerry Lee Lewis all made music together, opens tonight at the Noel Coward Theatre starring a multi-talented cast including Bill Ward (Coronation Street).

Tuesday 1 March 2011

The Wizard of Oz cast, left - right Edward Baker-Duly, David Ganly, Paul Keating and Danielle Hope

The Wizard of Oz cast, left - right Edward Baker-Duly, David Ganly, Paul Keating and Danielle Hope

It’s the premiere tonight of the musical that has received more publicity, hype and good old-fashioned audience anticipation than any other show for years as Andrew Lloyd Webber’s sparkly new production of The Wizard of Oz opens at the London Palladium. Rebooted by Jeremy Sams and produced by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Bill Kenwright, the show sees Over The Rainbow star Danielle Hope make her West End stage debut joined by Michael Crawford as the Wizard and Hannah Waddingham as the Wicked Witch.

Also today, tickets go on sale for the Olivier Awards at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane. The 13th March ceremony is open to theatregoers for the first time and promises a starry night of West End celebs and excerpts from the shows.

Wednesday 2 March 2011

Noel Coward’s blissful comedy Blithe Spirit starts previews at the Apollo Theatre featuring an all-star cast including Alison Steadman (Gavin & Stacey), Ruthie Henshall (Chicago), Hermione Norris (Spooks) and Robert Bathurst (Hattie). The revival is directed by the award-winning Thea Sharrock (After the Dance).

Thursday 3 March 2011

Previews starts for Hurly Burly at the Garrick Theatre, featuring the luscious Miss Polly Rae in an all singing, all dancing burlesque-inspired revue with a contemporary twist.

Alison Steadman as Madame Arcati in Blithe Spirit

Alison Steadman as Madame Arcati in Blithe Spirit

Also tonight, In A Forest, Dark and Deep starts previews at the Vaudeville Theatre with Lost star Matthew Fox and Olivia Williams (The Ghost Writer) in Neil LaBute’s new psychological thriller.

Friday 4 March 2011

Trevor Nunn begins his artistic directorship of the Theatre Royal Haymarket tonight with the start of previews for Flare Path. Terence Rattigan’s Second World War romance sees Sienna Miller, James Purefoy and Sheridan Smith star.

Saturday 5 March 2011

Kneehigh theare company, who scored a huge hit in London and on Broadway with their stage take on Noel Coward’s Brief Encounter, are back with a brand new production. The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, based on the classic French film, begins previews at the Gielgud Theatre tonight starring Joanna Riding, Meow Meow and Andrew Durand.

Also on Saturday, A Flea in Her Ear closes at the Old Vic Theatre starring Tom Hollander and Ordinary Days starring Daniel Boys ends at the Trafalgar Studios.