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Denise van Outen's return to Chicago delayed by injury

Casting news

DENISE van Outen has delayed her return to the West End production of Chicago at the Phoenix Theatre, after suffering a stress fracture in her heel.

Due to take on the role of Velma Kelly from September 24, 2018, she will now join the show at a later date. Her replacement will be announced in due course.

Previously Posted: Denise van Outen is returning to the West End and to the Kander and Ebb musical Chicago, which is currently playing at the Phoenix Theatre until January 5, 2019.

Van Outen, who originally played Roxie Hart at the West End’s Adelphi Theatre in 2001 and subsequently starred in the role on Broadway in 2002, returns to the show as Velma Kelly from September 24 until November 17, 2018.

She joins X Factor winner Alexandra Burke (The Bodyguard) as Roxie Hart until October 14, Duncan James (Legally Blonde, Hollyoaks) as Billy Flynn from September 10, Mazz Murray (We Will Rock You, Mamma Mia!) as Mama Morton and Paul Rider (Chicago, Adelphi and Cambridge Theatres) as Amos Hart.

Van Outen’s other theatre credits include Tell Me on a Sunday, Les Miserable, Legally Blonde The Musical and Rent. In 2012, she reached the final of Strictly Come Dancing.

Chicago originally opened in London in 1997 and ran for 15 years. It returned to the West End – Phoenix Theatre – in March 2018 with Cuba Gooding Jr playing the role of corrupt lawyer Billy Flynn. He was replaced by Martin Kemp in July.

Chicago tells the story of Roxie Hart, a nightclub singer who dreams of headlining in Vaudeville, but only achieves celebrity status when she murders her lover and enlists the help of Billy Flynn, Chicago’s shrewdest lawyer, to whip up the publicity surrounding the case and ensure her acquittal.

Described as slick, sexy and sassy, the Kander and Ebb musical has choreography by Ann Reinking in the style of the legendary Bob Fosse and a ‘fantastic’ Jazz score, which includes And All That Jazz, Razzle Dazzle and Cell Block Tango.

Chicago will be followed by Tony Award-winning new musical Come From Away, which tells the remarkable true story of 7,000 stranded air passengers during the wake of 9/11, and the small town in Newfoundland that welcomed them (from January 30, 2019).