DAME Julie Andrews hit London's West End last night (17MAR05) to attend the latest stage production of MARY POPPINS - 40 years after she starred in the OSCAR-winning movie.

Andrews, 69, took delight in watching her 23-year-old successor LAURA MICHELLE KELLY perform the classic role for the first time in a charity performance at London's PRINCE EDWARD THEATRE.

She described Kelly's performance as "glorious", and told the cast, "The future lies in your hands."

The new theatre production is said to be closer to the PAMELA TRAVERS book than the Hollywood film, which also starred American actor Dick Van Dyke.

Kelly has won a prestigious OLIVIER award for playing Poppins.

Other guests included Australian supermodel Elle Macpherson and British actress Elizabeth Hurley, who arrived with SIR Elton John's partner DAVID FURNISH.

18/03/2005 14:10