- Title: Best of London's West End unite to declare 'The Show Must Go On'
- Date: 3rd June 2021
- Summary: STARS OF "THE SHOW MUST GO ON" PERFORMING FOR THE CURTAIN CALL ACTOR, JOHN OWEN JONES, PERFORMING IN THE CURTAIN CALL FULL CAST JOINING OTHERS ON STAGE AND SINGING FIREWORKS ON STAGE, AUDIENCE APPLAUDING
- Embargoed: 17th June 2021 00:35
- Keywords: London The Show Must Go On Theatre West End musicals
- Location: LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM
- City: LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM
- Country: United Kingdom
- Topics: Arts/Culture/Entertainment,Europe,Theatre
- Reuters ID: LVA002EFPMIJD
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Stars of West End productions revelled in the return of theatre but feared for a potential third wave on Wednesday (June 2) as they performed in a musical showcase ahead of more UK reopenings on June 21.
"The Show Must Go On", a showcase of 18 London musicals opened its sold out run of shows to an audience of over 650 people marking the return to the stage for many of its actors.
On stage at the Palace Theatre from June 2-6, all profits from the show will go to performing arts charities Acting For Others and The Fleabag Support Fund.
The star of the West End production of "Pretty Woman", Aimie Atkinson, said the performers joining forces in one production was a show of solidarity and reminded everyone of the theatre's importance after a challenging year.
"We needed that kind of union and coming together and being like, no, we're here. This is what we do. This is like a massive taster of all the shows that are available in the West End, and you know, come back and see us," she said.
Actor Jordan Luke Gage, who plays Romeo in "& Juliet" and is gearing up to star in â€œHeathersâ€, said the existence of "The Show Must Go On" highlighted how loved the theatre industry was.
"It is the heartbeat of so many people's lives. And it kind of takes losing something for you to realise how important it is," he said.
He added he was remaining positive about potential delays to the June 21 goal. "I feel like we will be able to battle whatever happens," he said.
The BBC reported on Monday (May 31) the UK was in the early stages of a third wave of coronavirus infections and a government advising scientist said ending restrictions in England should be postponed.
Zizi Strallen, who is currently playing the titular role in "Mary Poppins", felt a further delay to theatre openings would be detrimental to peoples mental health.
"The impact will be huge, mainly on people's mental health... and financially, you know, I lost my livelihood, I literally lost my job. And so it's not just losing the theatre, it's like, I've lost everything that I've ever trained to do... So you know, people need to come back to their joy and their living," she said.
"Les Miserables" actor John Owen Jones was more optimistic about the potential bump in the roadmap, saying theatre would return "stronger than ever".
The show features 50 performers, including a choir made up of Musical Theatre 2020 graduates and a full orchestra. It will be livestreamed for those who cannot access the West End on Sunday (June 6).
Capacity at the theatre is reduced to 50 per cent, audience members have to wear face masks at all times and were temperature checked before entering the venue.
(Production: Ben Makori, Mindy Burrows)
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