West End theatres to dim their lights in tribute to Tina Turner

Tina: The Tina Turner Musical is playing at the Aldwych Theatre in London (Neel Bhatt/PA) (PA Media)
Tina: The Tina Turner Musical is playing at the Aldwych Theatre in London (Neel Bhatt/PA) (PA Media)

Theatres across the West End will dim their lights tonight as a tribute to Tina Turner, who died yesterday aged 83.

“The theatre world pays tribute to the immense talent and impact of Tina Turner,” said Hannah Essex, co-chief executive of the Society of London Theatre and UK Theatre.

“She has inspired countless generations through not only her pioneering music career, but her ability to break down barriers in the face of adversity. She will be greatly missed.”

Theatres across London will dim their lights for two minutes at 7pm.

Theatres dim their lights to show respect to notable artists who have made their mark on theatre in some way. Previously, the deaths of actors including Angela Lansbury, Antony Sher and Natasha Richardson, legendary composer Stephen Sondheim and producer Duncan C Weldon have all been commemorated in this way.

Typically, when theatres dim the lights they dim the house lights, but sometimes the canopy and outside lights are also turned off.

Tina Turner made a particularly huge impact on the West End: she was not only a 12-time Grammy-award winning artist, who sold over 100 million records worldwide, but her story was turned into a hit musical.

Tina: The Tina Turner Musical, which is jammed-full of Turner’s smash hit songs, tells the story of her life – from her childhood in Tennessee, to becoming one of the world’s biggest stars.

The Olivier Award-winning musical opened at the Aldwych Theatre in 2018, where it has been playing ever since. It opened on Broadway in 2019.

Last night, the cast of London’s Tina Turner musical spoke on stage during the interval of the show, after the news of her death had been released.

Katrina Love, who is currently playing Turner in the musical, spoke for the group, saying that the show would go on and that Turner would be partying in heaven. According to fans who were present, the show then became a celebration of the singer’s incredible life.

Yesterday, celebrities including Elton John, Mick Jagger and Diana Ross shared their tributes to the American singer.

“I’m so saddened by the passing of my wonderful friend Tina Turner,” said Jagger. “She was truly an enormously talented performer and singer. She was inspiring, warm, funny and generous. She helped me so much when I was young and I will never forget her.”

“Shocked. Saddened. Sending condolences to Tina Turner’s family and loved ones,” said Ross.

“We have lost one of the world’s most exciting and electric performers,” said John. “A total legend on record and on stage. She was untouchable.”