Shaftesbury Avenue 39, London W1D 6AR

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Opening Night

Until May 18, 2024

an extravagantly original production, every bit as eccentric as the film but also its own alchemical creation, more vivacious in this musical incarnation

The Guardian

Why See Opening Night?

MusicalsMothers Day

must end may 18th

The fantastic Sheridan Smith takes the lead in this exciting world premiere from the iconic theatrical innovator Ivo Van Hove and multi-award-winning singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright! Based on the John Cassavetes film of the same name, the musical follows a beleaguered theatre company as they try to stage a brand-new Broadway show, despite the many trials and tragedies that befall its star.

Sheridan Smith
Last seen as the titular character in the revival of Shirley Valentine at the Duke of York's Theatre, two-time Olivier Award winner Smith is a magnetic stage presence who has dazzled across drama, comedy, and more. With every outing, she proves time and again to be an unmissable talent.

Ivo Van Hove
One of the most in-demand theatre makers of the last decade Belgian Van Hove most recently won rave reviews for A Little Life at the Harold Pinter Theatre. Known for his avante-garde style that often incorporates videography, his other hits include adaptations of Network, A View From The Bridge, and West Side Story.

Rufus Wainwright
An idiosyncratic artist and performer who wraps lyrical flights of fancy around melancholic rhythms, with a dash of old-fashioned razzle-dazzle thrown in, Opening Night will be Wainwright's first musical. On the opportunity, he commented; "For me John Cassavetes's movie Opening Night has long been a shining beacon representing both excellence in cinema and the might of live theatre... I've been waiting for ages to write my first musical and with this fantastic story plus the incomparable Sheridan Smith, not to mention the incredible Ivo van Hove, I don't think I could have aimed any higher." We can't wait!

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Additional Information


Opening night: 6 March 2024

Cast and Creative


Sheridan Smith as Myrtle
Hadley Fraser as Manny
Shira Haas as Nancy
Nicola Hughes as Sarah
Amy Lennox as Dorothy
John Marquez as David
Benjamin Walker as Maurice
Rebecca Thornhill as Kelly
Cilla Silvia as Carla
Ian McLarnon as Leo
Jos Slovick as Gus

Robert Finlayson, Daniel Forrester, Jennifer Hepburn, Issy Khogali and Chrissie Perkins


Book and direction by Ivo van Hove
Music and lyrics by Rufus Wainwright
Set and lighting by Jan Versweyveld 
Costume by An D’Huys

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