The internationally award-winning production of Mary Poppins will return to its original West End home at the Prince Edward Theatre where, after three hit years in London, Disney’s Aladdin will end its run late August 2019. The production will star Zizi Strallen, who returns to play the title role following great acclaim on the recent sell-out international tour, and Charlie Stemp as Bert, who last year gave an award-winning performance as Arthur Kipps in Cameron Mackintosh’s production of Half A Sixpence and recently made his Broadway debut in Hello, Dolly!.
Cameron Mackintosh said:
“I’m thrilled to be bringing the internationally acclaimed new staging of Pamela Travers’ magical stories back to London in the autumn of 2019, with Disney, featuring the dazzling talents of Zizi Strallen and Charlie Stemp as Mary and Bert. The original production, over 14 years ago, only played London and Broadway and subsequently was revised and continues to be staged around the world with phenomenal success.
“The recent UK tour, starring Zizi as Mary, broke box office records everywhere it played. It has been particularly gratifying that the stage musical with its brilliant script by Julian Fellowes and wonderful new score by Stiles and Drewe, complementing the Sherman Brothers’ classic songs, has taken on its own magical life separate from the film, appealing to audiences of all ages and nationalities. Its story of the importance of family is at the heart of the show and the reason why this iconic British nanny remains irresistibly timeless and popular the world over.”
The multi award-winning creative team for Mary Poppins, which originally opened in the West End 14 years ago, is led by director Richard Eyre, with co-direction and choreography by Matthew Bourne, co-choreography by Stephen Mear, set and costume designs by Bob Crowley, lighting design by Natasha Katz, sound design by Paul Gatehouse and orchestrations by William David Brohn.
The stage production is co-created by Cameron Mackintosh and has a book by Academy Award-winning screenwriter and Downton Abbey creator, Julian Fellowes. The score by Richard M Sherman and Robert B Sherman includes the classic songs ‘Jolly Holiday’, ‘Step in Time’, ‘Feed the Birds’ and ‘Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious’ with new songs and additional music and lyrics by the Olivier award-winning British team of George Stiles and Anthony Drewe. The producer for Disney Theatrical Productions is Thomas Schumacher.
The stage production of Mary Poppins originally opened in the West End in December 2004, running for three years and over 1,250 performances. During this time it won two Olivier Awards, an Evening Standard Award and the Variety Club Award for Best Musical. The Tony Award-winning Broadway production ran for over six years. The show has subsequently toured the UK and Ireland, the US, Australia, New Zealand and played in Holland, Mexico, Austria, Switzerland, Dubai, Japan and Germany where the production continues its successful run in Hamburg. Mary Poppins has been seen by more than 11 million people worldwide.
Zizi Strallen is currently playing Fran in Strictly Ballroom The Musical at the Piccadilly Theatre. Her previous theatre credits include Follies at the National Theatre, Mary Poppins on tour in the UK, Ireland and in Dubai, Matthew Bourne’s The Car Man and Cinderella at Sadler’s Wells and on tour, Cats and Scrooge at the London Palladium, Hairspray and Chicago at Leicester Curve, Merrily We Roll Along at the Harold Pinter Theatre, Rock of Ages at the Shaftesbury Theatre and The Music Man for Chichester Festival Theatre.
Award-winning Charlie Stemp most recently played Barnaby Tucker in the Broadway production of Hello, Dolly! opposite Bette Midler and Bernadette Peters. He previously played the title role in last year’s Palladium pantomime Dick Whittington, following his critically acclaimed performance as Arthur Kipps in Half a Sixpence at the Noël Coward Theatre, a role he first performed at Chichester Festival Theatre. His further theatre credits include Wicked at the Apollo Victoria Theatre and the international tour of Mamma Mia!