Following the announcement that Chicago has extended its booking period to the end of March 2003, comes the news that Marti Pellow, who plays smooth but effective lawyer Billy Flynn ("All I Care About Is Love"), has extended his contract with the hit Kander and Ebb musical by eight weeks. He will now be appearing as Billy at the Adelphi until Nov. 16.
Anita Louise Combe (Roxie Hart), Anna-Jane Casey (Velma Kelly), Paul Rider (Amos Hart) and Chrissie Hammond (Mama Morton) are also to continue playing in their current roles until the same cut-off date.
Chicago has proved to be an enormous success, bringing plenty of American razzle-dazzle to the West End, and reminding (as if it were needed) theatregoers of what a great choreographic talent the late Bob Fosse was. The show is as much an evening of dance as of song, and its pared-down concert version — with particularly revealing costumes for the dancers — has helped to emphasize this.
The other striking feature of the musical is the way the orchestra is, literally, centerstage, and becomes as much a part of the show (especially the conductor) as the performers.
In addition, the show itself announced its own extension this week. It has added another six months to its booking period and is now taking bookings up to March 30, 2003.