The curtain will come down early on West End show Prick Up Your Ears after box office sales dwindled following Matt Lucas‘s withdrawal, producers have announced.

The Little Britain star pulled out of the production following the suicide of his ex-partner just days into the show’s London run.

Actor Con O’Neill was drafted in to complete the run, but ticket sales have not been strong enough to continue and it will close three weeks early.

Lucas’s former partner, Kevin McGee, was found dead at his Edinburgh flat a month ago.

The TV funnyman had been playing the role of Keith Halliwell – the lover of Joe Orton – in the stage play, a role in which he is seen preparing to take his own life. However, after the death he felt unable to return to the production.

A statement from producers said: “Despite very good feedback and notices for Con O’Neill’s performance, the box office sales have not been sufficient to keep the show going, and so the producers have taken the difficult decision to close the show three weeks prior to its scheduled end date.”

The last performance of Prick Up Your Ears at the Comedy Theatre will take place on Sunday, November 15.