TONIGHT Matthew Kelly will be ... starring in this year’s Empire Christmas show.
The former Stars in their Eyes presenter, pictured, will be in hit musical Legally Blonde when it comes to the Sunderland Empire from December 6-31.
He will join former Atomic Kitten star Liz McClarnon and rising stars Faye Brookes and Iwan Lewis who also make up the cast.
Matthew is best known for presenting Stars in Their Eyes, appearing in TV’s Benidorm and Cold Blood, his critically- acclaimed performances in Waiting For Godot with Ian McKellen and Lend Me A Tenor – The Musical.
He will play the part of Professor Callahan in Legally Blonde for this limited run over the festive season.
Winner of seven major awards including the coveted Best Musical 2011 (Olivier Awards) the al- singing, all-dancing romantic comedy is about knowing who you are and showing what you’ve got.
The decision to bring the show to the Empire during the traditional panto season raised eyebrows as it left Sunderland, once again, without a traditional festive production. But theatre bosses believe securing the West End show was a coup.
A spin-off from the film of the same name starring Reece Witherspoon, the production tells the story of Elle Woods who claims to be able to handle anything.
So when her boyfriend, Warner, dumps her she decides to follow him to Harvard Law School and win him back.
With some help from new-found friends Paulette, Emmett and her chihuahua Bruiser, she learns that it’s so much better to be smart than dumb.
The cast is led by Faye Brookes playing Elle, Iwan Lewis as Emmett, Liz McClarnon returning as Paulette and Neil Toon as Warner.
Howard Panter, joint chief executive of Ambassador Theatre Group, which runs the Empire, said: “Legally Blonde the Musical is a roaring success.
“People across the UK from Bristol to York and as far as Glasgow, have taken Legally Blonde into their hearts and are having one ‘Elle’ of a party at the theatre.”
l For tickets to Legally Blonde, tel 0844 871 3022.