About the show
Flash Bang Wallop! Half A Sixpence transfers to London’s Noel Coward Theatre.
Half A Sixpence, the new stage adaptation of a much-loved British musical film, head to the West End after debuting at Chichester Festival Theatre. The musical, which Rachel Kavanaugh directs and Cameron Mackintosh produces, broke box office records in Chichester. Julian Fellowes, who is best known for the quintessentially English television series Downton Abbey, wrote the book for this musical hit.
There is something perfectly British about Half A Sixpence. It’s adapted from Kipps: The Story Of A Simple Soul, which is a semi-autobiographical work by H.G. Wells. Among other books, Wells wrote The War Of The Worlds and The Time Machine. The musical reunites Fellowes with the composers George Stiles and Anthony Drewe. The same team previously worked together on Mary Poppins.
Arthur Kipps is an orphan working as a draper’s assistant. His hard-worked days are transformed when he unexpectedly inherits a fortune. Suddenly he counts himself as one of the movers and shakers of high society. The upper class Helen Walsingham helps Kipps to get the makeover of a lifetime, but at what cost? Ann Pornick watches from the sidelines as the man she has known all her life is transformed. With two women interested, Kipps has to choose which one – and which life – is really what’s good for him.
The entire original cast of the acclaimed Chichester production come to London with the production. Charlie Stemp plays the title role of Arthur Kipps with Devon-Elise Johnston as Ann Pornick, his childhood companion. Ian Bartholomew and Emma Williams, who both received Olivier Award nominations in 2016, play Chitterlow and Helen Walsingham.
Stiles and Drewe have written new songs for this new production. They join the original songs by David Heneker that include Money To Burn, Flash Bang Wallop and Half A Sixpence.
Half A Sixpence runs at the Noël Coward Theatre from 17 November 2016 – 2 September 2017.