Chicago by John Kander and Fred Ebb originally opened at the Adelphi Theatre on November 18, 1997 to rave reviews, winning the 1998 Laurence Olivier Award for Outstanding Musical Production. It transferred to the Cambridge Theatre in April 2006, then transferred to the Garrick Theatre until September 2012. It’s fifteen year run made Chicago the West End’s longest-running revival.
It was largely a replica of the Broadway revival production opened in London’s West End, directed by Walter Bobbie and designed by John Lee Beatty, with choreography by Ann Reinking in the style of Bob Fosse.
The original cast of the production included German jazz singer Ute Lemper as Velma, British actress Ruthie Henshall as Roxie Hart, Nigel Planer as Amos Hart, and Henry Goodman as Billy Flynn.
Like its Broadway counterpart, the London production featured many celebrities in the starring roles: Marti Pellow, David Hasselhoff, John Barrowman, Tony Hadley, Jerry Springer, Kevin Richardson and Ian Kelsey have all played the role of Billy Flynn. Maria Friedman, Josefina Gabrielle, Denise Van Outen, Claire Sweeney, Linzi Hateley, Frances Ruffelle, Jennifer Ellison, Jill Halfpenny, Brooke Shields, Sally Ann Triplett, Bonnie Langford, Tina Arena, Ashlee Simpson, Aoife Mulholland, Michelle Williams and Christie Brinkley have all played Roxie Hart.