Nicole Scherzinger to Star in ‘Sunset Boulevard’ on Broadway in the Fall

Jamie Lloyd’s radically reimagined revival of “Sunset Boulevard,” in which Nicole Scherzinger plays the faded film star Norma Desmond, will come to Broadway this fall after a rapturously received run in London.

Earlier this month, the revival was nominated for 11 Olivier Awards, including best musical revival, best actress in a musical for Scherzinger and best director for Lloyd. The Broadway production is scheduled to begin previews Sept. 28 and then open on Oct. 20 at the St. James Theater.

The musical, a dark thriller based on a 1950 film by Billy Wilder, features music by Andrew Lloyd Webber and book and lyrics by Don Black and Christopher Hampton; Glenn Close starred in both previous Broadway productions, in 1994 and 2017. (The stage role was originated by Patti LuPone in London; the film starred Gloria Swanson.)

Lloyd, a British theatermaker, has carved out a distinctive niche by staging starkly spare productions of classics with a focus on psychological drama. The new production, which ended its London run in January, is stripped down in many ways — two songs have been cut, there is no grand staircase or turban and Scherzinger doesn’t even wear shoes.

“It’s much more about the psychological and emotional journey as opposed to huge, elaborate sets,” Lloyd said in an interview. “It’s very much a kind of psychological chamber piece.”

The show, set in midcentury Los Angeles, is about a forgotten star of the silent film era who latches onto an aspiring young screenwriter in the hopes of rebooting her career.

Scherzinger, 45, has had a varied entertainment path — as a musician, an actress and a television talent show judge. The critic Matt Wolf, reviewing the London production for The New York Times, called this “a career-defining performance” for Scherzinger; the New York production will be her Broadway debut.

“I guess I’ve been waiting for this my whole life,” Scherzinger, who studied theater in high school and college, said in an interview. “I can’t believe that it’s finally about to happen.”

Scherzinger, who was born in Hawaii and raised in Kentucky, said she was eager to have another go at the role in the United States. She said she will set aside the script for a few months — she just spent three weeks visiting with her grandparents in Hawaii — before reimmersing herself in the character.

“I’ll be back in America, my home, and I’m going to want to try and up my game even more,” she said. “There’s certain places I can make stronger choices, and I’m excited to play around with that to see where it can go — it’s great to be able to explore even more and go deeper.”

Scherzinger, who said she has committed to nine months in the role, will be joined on Broadway by her three Olivier-nominated co-stars, Tom Francis, Grace Hodgett-Young and David Thaxton.

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