Imelda Staunton has been busy wowing audiences at the Chichester Festival Theatre with her performance as Momma Rose in Gypsy.
The show closed two weeks ago after rave reviews, and now it looks as though this fantastic American musical will return to London’s West End for its first British run in four decades.
The great news is that Staunton looks set to reprise her role, and, subject to availability, her co-stars Kevin Whately and Lara Pulver are also wanted for the cast.
One of Sondheim’s greatest musicals (although, how do you chose?), Gypsy takes us to a fading America and the world of Vadeville theatre. Momma Rose, an indomitable stage mother, has two children that she is determined will be stars.
June, the talented younger daughter, eventually marries and leaves the act, forcing her mother to turn her attentions to Louise, the elder, more introverted sister. Lousie goes on to become the 1930’s burlesque queen, Gypsy Rose Lee, while Momma Rose has to face the fact that her own show business aspirations will never be realised.
Previews are expected to begin at The Savoy Theatre at the end of March 2015, with booking to run all the way to the end of 2015, so there will be plenty of opportunity to see Staunton in the role.
It is an ambitious show, requiring a large ensemble cast and a fifteen piece orchestra, but given the five star reviews Staunton received in Chichester, it’s easy to see why it is making the transfer.
You should really try and catch this show if you can, Staunton’s performance is described as “one that will go down in history,” though given her incredible talent in a wide plethora of roles, this is hardly a surprise. The musical itself is fantastic, with a brilliant plot and amazing songs and I will definitely be getting tickets as soon as they go on sale.
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