West End musicals including Les Miserables and Hamilton 'will not reopen until 2021'

Musical giants Les Miserables, Mary Poppins, Hamilton and The Phantom Of The Opera will not return to the West End this year, Sir Cameron Mackintosh said as he urged the Government to “take action”.

The theatre owner and producer described the decision not to open until next year as “heartbreaking”, and he blamed “continued uncertainty” over when the Government is going to completely withdraw social distancing measures.

A process of consultation over potential redundancies for all employees on the productions has begun.

Phantom Of The Opera

Return dates for the productions will be planned for as early as practical next year.

It is expected to take several months of preparation for the productions to be remounted and audience confidence and advance sales to build once social distancing restrictions are lifted.

Sir Cameron’s statement comes after MPs were told theatres need clarity to know whether “Christmas is cancelled”.

Society Of London Theatre and UK Theatre chief executive Julian Bird said the festive period is crucial to theatres around the country.