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    First Glimpse Of Katie Brayben In Beautiful, Scottsboro Boys & Sunny Afternoon Up For Award + More! #WestEndUpdate

    As if the West End premiere of Beautiful – the Carole King Musical couldn’t be any more exciting, the first image of Katie Brayben as Carole King has been released (see below)! Brayben, who is currently appearing in King Charles III, will soon begin rehearsals for Beautiful which begins previews at the Aldwych Theatre on 10th February 2015.

    Based on the early life and career of legendary singer/songwriter Carole King, Beautiful has been a huge success on Broadway. Producers have found an all British cast, including the likes of Alan Morrissey, Gerry Goffin, Lorna Want, Ian McIntosh, Glynis Barber and Gary Trainor, to star in the musical’s West End premiere.

    The full list of nominees has been revealed for the 2014 Evening Standard Theatre Awards. Amongst the nominees is Mark Strong who is nominated for Best Actor for his performance in A View from the Bridge which is transferring to the Wyndham’s Theatre from 11th April 2015. The winners will be announced on 30th November in an event at the London Palladium.

    Nominees also include King Charles III (currently at the Wyndham’s Theatre) which is up for Best Play and Robert Hastie who is nominated for the Emerging Talent Award for his direction of My Night With Reg which transfers to the Apollo Theatre next year. The Scottsboro Boys (currently at the Garrick Theatre) and Sunny Afternoon (currently at the Harold Pinter Theatre) are both nominated for Best Musical.

    This week marks your last chance to catch Simon Paisley Day, Jenna Russell and Marc Elliott in Urinetown which is one of the best musicals of the year. Never Mind The Buzzcocks star, Phill Jupitus will take over from Simon Paisley Day as Caldwell B.Cladwell from 1st December. Meanwhile, Russell and Elliott will be replaced by their understudies, Julie Jupp (Penelope Pennywise) and Alasdair Buchan (Mr McQueen).

    Directed by Jamie Lloyd, Urinetown looks into how the world would cope if we lost the privilege to pee. The satirical musical comedy ran on Broadway to great acclaim between 2001 and 2004, receiving ten Tony Award nominations. It won for Best Book, Best Score and Best Direction. It runs in the West End at the Apollo Theatre until Saturday 10th January 2015.

    She’s back! Following her recent stint in EastEnders, it has been announced that Maria Friedman will direct a revival of Cole Porter's High Society at the Old Vic next year. Friedman most recently directed Merrily We Roll Along which received more five star reviews than any other musical in West End history. High Society will be staged in the round, running between 30th April and 22nd August 2015. 

    Discussing her new project, Friedman said: "To stage High Society in the round at The Old Vic is a hugely exciting project providing the perfect immersive environment for a sparkling musical celebration of wedding day shenanigans. I am really looking forward to transporting audiences into the glamorous heart of this world and hope they enjoy the party!"

    In other news, this week Ronan Keating will face the press in Once at the Phoenix Theatre, The Wind in the Willows at the Vaudeville Theatre and The Mikado at the Charing Cross Theatre begin previews and Speed-The-Plow at the Playhouse Theatre starring Lindsay Lohan plays its final performances.

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