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Musical Rent reduced to concert staging after company illness

A scene from Rent at St James Theatre. Photo: Tristram Kenton
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Musical Rent has been forced to reduce two performances to concert productions after illness among the cast.

The show is currently running at the St James Theatre in London, but was forced to cancel a performance on December 21 after four members of the cast and creative team fell ill.

A fifth member of the company has been taken ill today (December 22), meaning both performances scheduled will go ahead, but with concert stagings.

A statement from the producers said: “Sadly, four people, including  one of the leads, his understudy and the musical supervisor had combinations of gastroenteritis and ‎flu, which meant we were unable to go ahead with last night’s performance. We only became aware of the understudy and musical supervisor’s illnesses an hour before curtain up. We are very sorry that we had to cancel the performance, particularly as the season at St James Theatre is sold out.”

It added: “However, we offered the audience refunds and the production will be going back out on tour in February, including to places close to London such as Bromley, Woking and Tunbridge Wells, so we hope people might be able to see the ‎show at one of these venues instead.  A fifth company member has been taken ill today, so both of today’s performances will be concert versions of the production.”

Rent is produced by Robert Mackintosh and Idili Theatricals for Rent 20th Anniversary Production Ltd.

The illnesses follow news that Matilda in the West End was forced to cancel its performance on December 21 due to “multiple illnesses in the cast”. Earlier this month, Dreamgirls also cancelled two performances due to illness.


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