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Last Updated: Tuesday, 27 September 2005, 09:04 GMT 10:04 UK
Elton sets date for vampire show
Sir Elton John
Sir Elton's other musicals include Aida and Billy Elliot
Sir Elton John's latest musical Lestat, based on the bloodsucking hero of Anne Rice's book Interview with the Vampire, is to open on Broadway next year.

The show, co-written by Bernie Taupin, is scheduled to open at New York's Palace Theatre on 13 April, with previews beginning on 11 March.

Actor Hugh Panaro will play the role made famous by Tom Cruise in the 1994 film version, directed by Neil Jordan.

The show will open in San Francisco in December prior to its New York run.

Lestat is based on Anne Rice's 1973 novel Interview with the Vampire plus her books The Vampire Lestat and Queen of the Damned.

It marks the first time Sir Elton and Taupin have worked together on a stage musical.

'Huge fans'

Speaking in 2003, John said he and his songwriting partner had been "huge fans of Anne Rice's books for a long, long time".

"When I read Interview with the Vampire for the first time, I wanted to become a vampire," the singer added.

The last Broadway musical on the subject - Dance of the Vampires, starring Michael Crawford - closed in January 2003 after just 56 performances.

Lestat will have a book by Linda Woolverton, who wrote the stage version of Beauty and the Beast. Robert Jess Roth will direct.

Carolee Carmello will play Gabrielle, while Jack Noseworthy will appear as Armand - the character Antonio Banderas played in Jordan's Oscar-nominated film.

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