Curtain rises on first indoor musical since the coronavirus lockdown

  • Video report by ITV News Correspondent Lucy Watson

After months of silence on stages across the country, the curtain has risen on the first indoor musical since the coronavirus lockdown.

Sleepless is an adaptation of the classic romcom Sleepless in Seattle.

The musical has opened at Wembley’s Troubadour Theatre, which can hold more than 1,000 people but only around 400 are now allowed in to enable social distancing.

However it is very different as everyone must wear a mask, but there's applause for a return to a new normal.

Cast and crew are tested for Covid-19 every day, it takes an hour to get the results back and adds £70,000 to production costs.

Former pop-star Jay McGuinness told ITV News: "The first week we had two positive results and that meant every time you took your test you thought is today my day. And since then it's been consistently negative across the board."

Credit: ITV News

Co-star and former Girls Aloud member Kimberly Walsh added: "The actual process is not that pleasant, but then I think we have adapted to the new normal. Of course it's different to what we're used to but we just feel so happy to be working again."

Audiences wear face-coverings, they're temperature-checked, hand sanitiser is on tap and deep cleans happen after every performance as part of this new world order.

Despite the added costs in a post-coronavirus world, producer Michael Rose said the only thing to do was to get back to performances.

"We've had no money since we were shut down.

"There's no income streams. Really the only way to deal with this is to get back to work. It's got to be done safely but it's got to be done now."The production presents plenty of challenges for the cast and crew, but what could be more perfect for the age of social distancing than a story about two people who fall in love before they've even met?