Okay, so Mackintosh has hardly been resting on his laurels, with ongoing roll outs of his shows around the world. But after Witches of Eastwick he declared that he had no desire to originate another new show again. And, for awhile he didn’t, concentrating on a major revival of My Fair Lady and. But in 2004 he co-produced Mary Poppins, a reinvention of the story from the movie and the Pamela Travers books (with several new songs and a new book). And, if Avenue Q is a transfer of an already existing show, it’s still pretty new. Although the Theatre Royal would only confirm that they were in the last rounds of talks to bring the musical to Stratford, industry sources have told Playbill.com that Mackintosh has spearheaded the move with a view to a West End stint if the initial run is successful. No news yet on which venue. The creative team (led by Jason Moore as director) from the New York production is likely to remain on board, but an entirely new cast will be brought in.
The show is by Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx, with book by Jeff Whitty and won the 2004 Tony Award for Best Musical. Blending people and puppets in a send-up of “Sesame Street”-style shows, it moved from Off-Broadway to the Golden Theatre in 2003, where it is still playing (as well as a Las Vegas production scheduled to open on Sept. 5, 2005). It carries the warning, “Full puppet nudity, not suitable for children.” The Theatre Royal, Stratford East recently transferred a musical, The Big Life, to Theatreland (its first musical transfer for several years).