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The Rising Stars Festival showcasing the work of 23 producers…

Twenty-three young theatre producers are being given a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to present their work in the West End for the first time.

Rising Stars
Making their West End producing debuts. Included in the photograph are: – Chris Steward, Shanay Holmes, Katy Lipson, Ameena Hamid, Adam Lenson, Tom Duern, Kirk Jameson, Jack Maple, Chris Marcus, Damien Stanton, Piers Cottee-Jones, Jamie Chapman Dixon, John-Webb Carter, Shaun McCourt, Robin Rayner, Hugh Summers, Greg Barnett, Krystal Lee, Sarah Evans + Nica Burns (middle, front) .
Photographed at The Lyric Theatre, London. Photograph by David Levene

Their 17 productions – plays, musicals, concerts and one-off events – have attracted wonderful performers from emerging talent to popular West End stars. The Rising Stars Festival will run from May to September in Nimax’s six theatres (the Apollo, Duchess, Garrick, Lyric, Palace and Vaudeville).

Announcing Nimax’s festival today, Nica Burns, Chief Executive, said: “I am delighted to be welcoming into the spotlight a galaxy of talented young producers – our rising stars making their West End debuts. Entrepreneurial, adventurous, creating shows during our lockdown days to entertain and inspire, attracting stellar performers. Usually behind the spotlight, few understand what a producer does. Without them, there are no shows. If these enterprising producers are the future of the West End, it’s looking good.

The Rising Stars Festival runs alongside Nimax’s long-running shows and new summer programme. All Nimax’s long-running shows will have reopened by the autumn. Please check the Nimax website (www.nimaxtheatres.com) for details of all 34 productions currently on sale.

Nica Burns added: “A big thank you to Oliver Dowden and the DCMS for awarding us a Cultural Recovery Fund grant which has enabled us to re-open all six of our theatres with social distancing, support the Rising Stars Festival and create hundreds of new jobs.


17 – 19 May Drag Queens of Pop (Vaudeville Theatre)
Producer David O’Reilly

18 May – 13 June Cruise (Duchess Theatre)
Producers Katy Lipson for Aria Entertainment, Jamie Lambert
and Eliza Jackson for Lambert Jackson Productions

19 May – 11 July Death Drop (Garrick Theatre)
Producers Ameena Hamid, Jamie Chapman Dixon and John-Webb Carter for Carter Dixon Productions

22 & 23 May Roles We’ll Never Play (Vaudeville Theatre)
Producer Thomas Duern

24 May An Evening with Kathy Burke (Lyric Theatre)
Producer David O’Reilly

24 May Intermissions Live (Vaudeville Theatre)
Producers Alice Fearn & Kirk Jamieson

24 May, 14 June & 5 July Monday Night at the Apollo (Apollo Theatre)
Producers Greg Barnett and Hugh Summers for Wild Mountain Productions Ltd

27 -30 May Public Domain (Vaudeville Theatre)
Producer Adam Lenson

2 – 6 June The Show Must Go On! (Palace Theatre)
Producers Chris Marcus and Damien Stanton for Theatre Support Fund+ and Jack Maple and
Brian Zeilinger for MZG productions

7 – 13 June Alyssa, Memoirs of a Queen! (Vaudeville Theatre)
Producers Robin Rayner and James Quaife for New Frame Productions

7 June An Evening With Arlene Phillips (Duchess Theatre)
Producer David O’Reilly

10 – 13 June West End Musical Celebration (Palace Theatre)
Producers Shanay Holmes and Chris Steward for West End Musical Productions

14 June West End Live Lounge (Lyric Theatre)
Producer Shaun McCourt

21 June & 28 June The Distance You Have Come (Apollo Theatre)
Producers Sarah Evans for Sevans Productions and Krystal Lee

28 June The Wonderbirds Live (Duchess Theatre)
Producer David O’Reilly

15 July – 30 August Wonderment (Palace Theatre)
Producers Stephen McGill, McGill Productions, John-Webb Carter and Jamie Dixon, Carter Dixon
Productions, Piers Cottee-Jones, Piers Cottee-Jones Entertainment

17 September – 13 October The Last 5 Years (Vaudeville Theatre)
Producers Katy Lipson for Aria Entertainment, Edward Prophet and People Entertainment Group, with Dan Looney, Adam Paulden and Jason Haigh-Ellery for DLAP GROUP

Nica Burns OBE, Chief Executive of Nimax Theatre
Nica Burns is a multi-award winning producer of over 100 productions, including ‘Everbody’s Talking About Jamie”, currently at the Apollo theatre. She was artistic director at the Donmar Warehouse from 1983 to 1989 and production director of Stoll Moss and Really Useful Theatres from 1993 to 2005. She founded Nimax Theatres in 2005 with her business partner Max Weitzenhoffer and co-owns the Palace, Lyric, Apollo, Garrick, Vaudeville and Duchess theatres. In January she was named Producer of the Year by The Stage.


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