West End and Broadway musicals star Ruthie Henshall is to go legit with a starring role in Noel Coward’s Blithe Spirit.
Henshall is to star as Elvira in a new revival of Noel Coward’s classic comedy at the Apollo Theatre in London from 2 March 2011.
Winner of an Olivier Award for her performance in She Loves Me, Ruthie Henshall has played some of the West End and Broadway’s biggest shows including Crazy For You, Chicago, Miss Saigon and Oliver!
Henshall will join a star-studded cast for the play, including Alison Steadman (Gavin and Stacey) as Madame Arcati, and Cold Feet’s Hermione Norris (Spooks) and Robert Bathurst (Alex) as Charles and Ruth Condomine.
In the play, the novelist Charles Condomine (Bathurst) and his second wife Ruth (Norris) are haunted when an eccentric medium (Steadman) manages to conjure up the ghost of Charles’s neurotic and beautiful first wife, Elvira (Henshall), at a séance.
The spirited comedy will open at Theatre Royal Bath later this year before a UK tour and West End opening in the Spring.
Noel Coward’s comedy will be directed by Thea Sharrock, who recently enjoyed enormous success for her production of Terence Rattigan’s After The Dance at the National Theatre. She will return to Rattigan next year for his Centenary by directing Cause Célèbre, which will open at the Old Vic Theatre on 17 March, a few days after Blithe Spirit opens in London.
No stranger to Blithe Spirit, Sharrock directed a 2004 production of the play at the Savoy Theatre starring Penelope Keith. The Noel Coward classic, first produced in 1941, has had numerous UK revivals in the last few years.