The news comes at a welcome time for the show. The London staging is due to close at the Piccadilly Theatre on April 23 to make way for the Ewan McGregor-starring production of Guys and Dolls. There had been speculation that Jailhouse Rock might simply theatre hop. However, the producer Alan Janes and director Rob Bettinson have decided to close the show in the U.K. to concentrate on developing the new version for the U.S. (where Rene Sheridan will co-produce). It is hoped that the U.S. version, if successful, will spawn a U.K. tour in 2006. After that, a West End return is the aim.
Janes said in a statement, “It is sad to be coming to the end of the London run, but what we do have to look forward to is coming back to London with a completely new version of the show — and the song that has until now eluded us!” He has also said that the pair’s hit Buddy Holly musical, Buddy, is destined to come back to Theatreland.