Despite glowing reviews upon its April opening, Cameron Mackintosh’s new musical ‘Betty Blue Eyes’ has posted early closing notices: its last performance will take place at the Novello Theatre on September 24. Legendary West End producer Mackintosh commented: ‘It’s very curious – after such amazing reviews and positive word of mouth, no-one knows the real reason why Betty couldn’t find a bigger audience. We have been consistently playing to just over 50 per cent but it just isn’t enough to cover the costs. Of course I am disappointed but I’m not despondent, I am enormously proud of Betty. I know that she will eventually have her day and another life.’ Though loosely based on the Alan Bennett film ‘A Private Function’, ‘Betty Blue Eyes’ – which stars Reece Shearsmith, Sarah Lancashire and an animatronic pig voiced by Kylie – was about as risky as West End musicals get these days, being an ultra-British show that was neither an adaptation of a Hollywood blockbuster, nor a jukebox musical based on already well-known songs. A big shame, though we can at least take some consolation in the fact Andrew Lloyd-Webber’s godawful ‘Love Never Dies’ is closing this Saturday.
For info, see Betty Blue Eyes listing.