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Denise Van Outen cast in Chicago at the Phoenix Theatre

Saturday, 1st Sep 2018  

Update (11 Sep 2018):  Denise Van Outen delays return to Chicago due to injury. Further details to follow.

It was only recently that Chicago, still running at the Phoenix Theatre, announced another familiar name joining its cast in September, with Blue’s Duncan James the new Billy Flynn.

But now we turn our attentions to the character of Velma Kelly, who is set to be played by Denise Van Outen from the end of September. She will also join another well known star in Alexandra Burke, who currently played Roxie Hart.

And since the show opened earlier this year many other celebrity cast members have taken to the show, with Cuba Gooding Jr. and Martin Kemp both playing Billy Flynn during the course of its run.

The story of Chicago takes us back to the 1920s when the Windy City was gripped by the ‘celebrity criminal’. The main character is Roxie Hart, who is thrown in prison for murdering her lover, and inside she meets vaudevillian performer Velma Kelly, who has also murdered, thrusting them both into the spotlight for the wrong reasons.
But they both want to be stars and to turn their fortunes around they enlist the help of sleazy lawyer Billy Flynn in their bids for freedom.

It’s not the first time that Van Outen has stepped into the world, having previously played Roxie Hart on the previous West End run of Chicago. The performer is best known for her television presenting work, including The Big Breakfast, but she has carved out a successful career on the stage, appearing in Legally Blonde at the Savoy Theatre and Tell Me On A Sunday at the Gielgud Theatre.

Another familiar face in Chicago should keep interest high as the production heads towards its January closure at the Phoenix Theatre. The venue then hosts Come From Away, set in the aftermath of 9/11 when communities in rural Canada band together to help those left stranded as flights were grounded following the terrorist attacks.
Chicago continues at the Phoenix Theatre until Saturday 5th January 2019. Denise Van Outen joins the cast on Monday 24th September 2018.

Chris Packer
Chris Packer Chris Packer has been writing about the West End for many years and wishes this knowledge would help him win some pub quizzes. When he’s not writing about the newest shows he’s probably watching films or anticipating the latest releases.

Article filed under: Theatre News | Cast Announcements |


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