Current and future Cinderella West End actors are heartbroken at the end of the show

Andrew Lloyd Webber’s theater group have come under fire after news broke that production of the musical Cinderella was closing in the West End – with some current and future cast members suggesting they won’t were informed only when the news was made public. Production will wrap in the West End next month, less than a year after its premiere.

The show, which takes place at the Gillian Lynne Theatre, has been hit by Covid-19-related disruptions from the start and will play its last performance on June 12, a note on its website and a tweet said. In a statement, Lord Lloyd-Webber said he was “incredibly proud” of the show.

He added: “Not only did it get some of the best reviews of my career, but we led the charge to reopen the West End, ensuring theater and live entertainment remained relevant and in the news. While putting on a new show in the midst of Covid has been an incredible challenge, we have held the government’s feet against the flames throughout their reversals during the pandemic.

Lord Lloyd-Webber’s statement added: ‘Now I am truly delighted to get to work putting together a new production with (production company) No Guarantees for Broadway. Many thanks to everyone involved, especially our UK audience who loved and supported the show. See you next March on Broadway.

Actress Carrie Hope Fletcher, who plays Cinderella, wrote on Twitter: “I don’t think I have the words. And if I did, I’d probably be advised not to say them. Sending love to all who are affected by today’s news and the way that news was delivered.

Theater star Summer Strallen said in a lengthy Instagram video that she recently had a wig fitted before reprising the role of Queen from Rebecca Trehearn, and claimed she only found out the show had been canceled when a friend sent him a Sunday article.

Speaking to BBC Radio 4 PM, she said: ‘People in our industry feel so disposable. Me included. I made a reaction video on Instagram that I normally never would for fear of being blacklisted in the industry I still have that fear to be honest but I feel so strongly that it is so unfair, not only to the cast but also to the venue staff, the backstage team and the musicians. There was no consideration for this.

A statement from Andrew Lloyd Webber’s theater troupe said: ‘The timeline reported online is not correct. The entire company that was working yesterday was notified in person after the matinee performance. There was no evening performance so it wasn’t until a show last night.

“At the same time that the company was informed, all those not present were called or emailed by the wider RUG (Really Useful Group) team. Every effort was made to ensure that the message was disseminated as widely as possible as quickly as possible, but clearly we had to act quickly as the news was circulating on social media.”

Strictly the star had to join the show

Strictly Come Dancing runner-up and leader John Whaite has expressed his heartache at the news as he was set to join the cast in July and reprise the role of Prince Charming. Whaite said in a post on her Instagram Stories: “This is heartbreaking news.

“For me because I was scheduled to play Prince Charming in July, but more so for the current cast, band and production team who have fought through Covid to bring a shiny new show to the stage. My heart goes to each and every one of them.

“I had the chance to watch Cinderella in December 2021 and it was one of the most wonderful musicals I have seen in a long time. I was so excited to join the cast, it was a dream of a lifetime come true, but sadly not yet. Who knows what the future holds – I won’t give up hope.

Deadline reported that the cast was informed of the closure before going on stage in a message that read, “Some of you already know, we just notified the creative/production teams, cast, team and the group and a statement will be published shortly in the press and on social networks.

“Thank you for your immeasurable contribution to the show. We should all be very proud of Cinderella and all that we have accomplished together, and we look forward to our paths crossing again before too long.

Andrew Lloyd Webber’s theater group have come under fire after news broke that production of the musical Cinderella was closing in the West End, with some current and future cast members suggesting they won’t were informed only when the news was made public.

Theater producer and writer James Graham said in a tweet: “When your show has become the face of ‘re-opening.’ Definitely don’t write an article a few days before you tell them for the trade magazine Definitely call your actors.

Last July, Lord Lloyd-Webber said he was determined to open Cinderella in London and had at this stage ignored “siren voices” suggesting he move it to Broadway.

The show’s website says anyone who booked tickets after June 12 won’t lose their money.

The show has been hit by Covid delays

Cinderella premiered in August last year, it was due to take place the month before but was delayed due to Covid isolation protocols. The show kicked off with 50 per cent audience capacity after the impresario rejected Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s offer to include the show in the coronavirus live event pilot programme.

Then in December, Cinderella was called off due to “Covid-related absences”, alongside London productions of hit musicals Hamilton and The Lion King. At the time, Lord Lloyd-Webber said it was ‘simply heartbreaking’ to see the theater industry ‘decimated’ by Omicron’s cancellations, adding that ‘no one in government is listening’.

He postponed Cinderella until 2022 “to avoid more disruption” as the number of Covid-19 cases rose across the country. Written by The Crown star Emerald Fennell, Cinderella is described as a “complete reimagining” of the classic fairy tale and is based on an original idea by Fennell.

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