Rap mogul SEAN 'P DIDDY' COMBS is a bag of nerves before each performance of hit Broadway play A RAISIN IN THE SUN - because celebrities are often in the audience.

The BAD BOY boss - who stars as WALTER LEE YOUNGER, a character which Sidney Poitier made famous in the 1961 movie version - is settling comfortably into New York's highly regarded theatre community, but admits his high-profile audience leaves him feeling ill-at-ease.

Diddy - who stars opposite Sanaa Lathan, Phylicia Rashad and AUDRA McDONALD in the production - says, "The other day Muhammad Ali was in the audience and Nicole Kidman and Sean Penn came, so that really makes me nervous when a lot of people come out.

"You don't know where they're sitting but somebody will tell you and sometimes it makes you a little nervous. But it also excites you that they would take the time to come out.

"And most importantly, all the diverse audiences. There's so many young kids that are coming out that never had been to Broadway."

17/05/2004 13:49