Sheridan Smith 'heartbroken' over early closure of West End play

Sheridan Smith feels 'heartbroken' over the decision to close her West End play two months early.

The 42-year-old actress took on the lead role in a production of 'Opening Night' which opened in March, but producers made the difficult decision to bring the curtain down on 18 May instead of July 27 following lacklustre ticket sales - and Sheridan feels sad for everyone involved.

She told The Times newspaper: "I was just heartbroken for the company. I felt that I’d let them down in a way, that I couldn’t sell it ...

"I feel bad for the team and all the work they put in, but I’m at that age now where I want to be challenged. I want to do new things, I don’t want to do that same old boring stuff. I would do it again in a heartbeat, so I have no regrets."

She went on to admit she took on the role of Myrtle - an actress facing turmoil as she prepares to open a play - to face her "demons" after suffering a breakdown during a production of 'Funny Girl' back in 2016.

Sheridan added: "'I was very ashamed of that time of my life, and I wanted to do this part to prove that I could do it, that I could face my demons head on. I'm so much stronger than I was back then."

She went on to conclude that even though the play is closing early, she found it very therapeutic. Sheridan explained: "This has been very cathartic for me ... It’s been like therapy, and even though it’s closing early, we still did it."

'Opening Night producers Wessex Grove previously announced the decision to end the play’s early in a statement release last month. It read: "In a challenging financial landscape, 'Opening Night' was always a risk and, while the production may not have had the life we had hoped for, we feel immensely proud of the risk we took and of this extraordinary production.

"Our world-class cast delivers a brilliant show night after night, and there are still five weeks left to see Sheridan Smith in the role of a lifetime. What is sure-fire and safe has its place."