The producers of the smash-hit ‘NATIVITY! THE MUSICAL’, are thrilled to announce Rylan Clark-Neal as ‘The Critic’ alongside the previous announced Simon Lipkin as ‘Mr Poppy’, when the show returns to The Eventim Apollo, Hammersmith for its third year from 11 to 29 December 2019. Further star casting to be announced!

Rylan Clark-Neal exploded on to the entertainment scene after appearing on ITV’s

“X Factor” in 2012 where he finished in fifth place. Since then, Rylan has rapidly established himself as a popular television and radio presenter. Following winning “Celebrity Big Brother” in 2013, Rylan went on to present “Big Brother’s Bit on the Side” and “Celebrity Big Brother’s Bit on the Side” and was a host on ITV 2’s “Xtra Factor”.

Rylan now regularly presents on ITV’s “This Morning” and presents a show on BBC Radio 2 on Saturday afternoons. His presenting successes saw him be nominated for ‘Best Presenter’ at the 2016 and 2017 NTAs and he won the title of ‘Radio Times TV Presenter Champion’ in 2017. Most recently Rylan appeared on the BBC’s “Celebrity Apprentice” and Channel 4’s “Celebrity Bake Off”.  Rylan was mostly recently announced as a co-presenter for BBC Two’s ‘Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two’ for the 2019 season.

Rylan says ‘I’m so excited to be joining the company of “Nativity! The Musical”. The Eventim Apollo is such an iconic London venue and I am thrilled that I will be performing to thousands of people as ‘The Critic’ which is such a terrific role. Alan Carr played it in the film and Jo Brand on stage last year, I have big shoes to fill but I can’t wait to get started”.

“NATIVITY! THE MUSICAL” will be Rylan’s London stage debut and he will be joined  by the previously announced Simon Lipkin (direct from the film ‘Nativity! Rocks’) who delighted audiences in 2017 and 2018 as the hilarious ‘Mr Poppy’. Simon will reprise the role for a third year at the Eventim Apollo.

Rylan and Simon are the initial London cast to be announced, with further star casting to be released at a later date.