After scrapping its spring premiere, the new musical based on Sleepless in Seattle now intends to open this fall with myriad safety measures in place in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. Sleepless will now begin August 25 at the Troubadour Wembley Park Theatre (its originally announced home) with opening night set for September 1. The limited run will play through September 27.
Following advice from the World Health Organization and Public Health England, the production and theatre will work to ensure there is no physical contact between staff and audiences, and that social distance measures are enforced. Theatregoers will have their temperatures checked upon entry and will be required to wear face masks. Hand sanitization stations will be available around the venue, which will be deep cleaned after each performance. Additionally, cast, crew, and audiences will be sent up-to-date information 48 hours before each performance.
In the wake of the public health crisis, Sleepless shifted its focus from hitting the stage to providing relief. Costume designer Sue Simmerling—with her company Carry On Costumes and with support from producers Michael Rose and Damien Sanders—produced scrubs and PPE for front line medical workers.
Additionally, once the Morgan Young-helmed production resumes, it will host an NHS Gala, titled A Night for Sleepless Heroes, August 27. NHS and Care workers are welcome with up to three guests. Click here for more information.
"Our story in Sleepless deals with mending something that is broken—it’s about putting a family back together after a loss—and we feel it’s time to do exactly that," Rose said. "It’s time to start the healing process—that’s part of what we do in theatre."
Featuring a book by Michael Burdette and music and lyrics by Robert Scott and Brendan Cull, the romantic comedy stars Jay McGuiness and Kimberley Walsh as Sam and Annie.