Posts with the label rewrite this story
Showing posts with label rewrite this story. Show all posts
Showing posts with label rewrite this story. Show all posts

Thursday, 17 March 2022

Regent's Park Open Air Theatre Announces Principle Cast for Legally Blonde


Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre have today announced principal casting for their forthcoming production of Legally Blonde (13 May-2 July), along with the full creative team.

Courtney Bowman takes the central role of Elle Woods. Courtney previously appeared in SIX (Arts Theatre/Lyric), Everybody’s Talking About Jamie (Apollo/Sheffield Crucible), Blondel (Union) and The Wind in the Willows (UK Tour). Courtney can currently be seen as Small in the hit children’s CBeebies show Big Cook Little Cook.

Directed by Lucy Moss, co-director and co-writer of SIXLegally Blonde is written by Laurence O'Keefe and Nell Benjamin (music and lyrics), Heather Hach (book) and is based on the novel by Amanda Brown and the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer motion picture.

Also joining the cast are Michael Ahomka-Lindsay (Emmett), Lauren Drew (Brooke), Vanessa Fisher (Vivienne), Isaac Hesketh (Margot), Nadine Higgin (Paulette), Alžbeta Matyšáková (Enid), Eugene McCoy (Callahan), Grace Mouat (Pilar), Alistair Toovey (Warner), and Hannah Yun Chamberlain (Serena).

Full casting will be announced in due course.

Legally Blonde is created by Cassiopeia Berkeley-Agyepong (dramaturg), Cat Beveridge (musical supervisor), Jean Chan (costume designer), Shanaé Chisholm (casting assistant), Natalie Gallacher CDG for Pippa Ailion Casting (casting director), Tony Gayle (sound designer), Phillip Gladwell (lighting designer), Ainsley Hall Ricketts (assistant choreographer), Laura Hopkins (set designer), Barbara Houseman (voice & text and season associate director), Majella Hurley (dialect coach), Ellen Kane (choreographer), Ingrid Mackinnon (season associate: intimacy support), Lucy Moss (director), Priya Patel Appleby (associate director), Chris Poon (assistant musical director), Alexzandra Sarmiento (assistant choreographer), Amber Sinclair-Case (associate director) and Katharine Woolley (musical director).

Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre’s 90th Anniversary season also includes 101 Dalmatians (12 Jul – 28 Aug), a newly commissioned musical written by Douglas Hodge (music and lyrics) and Johnny McKnight (book), from a stage adaptation by Zinnie Harris, based on the book by Dodie SmithAntigone (3 – 24 September) by Barber Shop Chronicles writer Inua Ellams after Sophocles, is the second commission from the theatre in 2022, directed by Max Webster and co-directed by Jo Tyabji.
 

Regent's Park Open Air Theatre Announces Principle Cast for Legally Blonde

Thursday, 17 March 2022

Wednesday, 16 March 2022

Everybody's Talking About Jamie (Tour), New Victoria Theatre Theatre | Review


Everybody's Talking About Jamie (Tour)
New Victoria Theatre
Reviewed on Tuesday 15th March 2022
★★★★

Everybody's Talking About Jamie is fast becoming a staple piece of theatre in the UK and indeed across the world. Having had various iterations in many countries including Japan and Italy, as well as the hit film which was released last year; the musical retains its Britishness, strong heart and morals and continues to be an inspiring and entertaining experience.

Dan Gillespie Sells and Tom MacRae's show tells the story of an extroverted 15 year old who dreams of being a drag queen. Despite being sure of himself and his abilities, young Jamie New faces a number of hurdles and people who try to dull his sparkle. So, he works to overcome these and to show the close-minded people around him that being true to yourself can get you far. It's a show which delights and inspires in equal measure, and is sure to keep its spot in theatre lover's hearts for a long time.

As the title character, Layton Williams is a treat to watch. He brings Jamie to life truthfully and so glamourously. From the opening of 'And You Don't Even Know It', Layton completely owns the character and shows us the light and shade enveloped in it. At times his vocals get lost but he makes up for this with his incredible wit and larger than life personality that soars on stage.

Playing Jamie's kind and strong mum is Amy Ellen Richardson who's vocal performance is outstanding. 'He's My Boy' is an absolute highlight of the show and her vulnerable performance is incredibly moving. Her chemistry with Layton is great and she also works incredibly well with her best friend Ray (played brilliantly at this performance by Lisa-Marie Holmes).

Another lovely friendship is that of Jamie and Pritti. The pair are both misunderstood and confined in their own ways and it's so sweet to see them discuss this and to support each other without any toxicity. Sharan Phull is endearing and moving as Pritti, especially in her solo moments and fantastic monologue at the end of the show.

Shane Richie as Hugo/Loco Chanelle is fantastically entertaining, giving a really strong vocal performance and also showcasing fabulous comedic timing. Other stand out performances come from George Samson as Dean Paxton and Gary Lee in various roles including Laika Virgin at this performance.

Everybody's Talking About Jamie is a musical which inspires us all to own what makes us 'different' and is a really heartwarming portrayal of family, friendship and acceptance. It's contemporary and over the top and so much fun. Let's talk about Jamie a bit longer! Go see the show on tour!

Everybody's Talking About Jamie plays at the New Victoria Theatre until 19th March 2022 and then continues its tour

Everybody's Talking About Jamie (Tour), New Victoria Theatre Theatre | Review

Wednesday, 16 March 2022

Friday, 11 March 2022

Get Up, Stand Up! The Bob Marley Musical Extends Booking Period


Producers have today announced that the hit production Get Up, Stand Up! The Bob Marley Musical has extended booking until 29 January 2023.  The critically acclaimed production has been playing to sell-out ecstatic crowds since October last year at the Lyric Theatre Shaftesbury Avenue and it has just been nominated for 4 Olivier Awards, including BestNew Musical. 

 

Producers said: “Bob’s music has a power to heal, and bring joy and life and happiness to the whole world. In these difficult times we are so pleased that audiences are feeling the positive vibrations reverberating around the Lyric Theatre which we have made our home. ONE LOVE to all nominees and welcome to our family, the brilliant Michael Duke.” 

 

This news comes as new images are released of Michael Duke who has taken over the role of Bob Marley from Arinzé Kene. Duke has been performing for 20 years, starting his career as Young Simba in The Lion King. He has appeared in the West End run of The Inheritance, West Side Story at the Royal Exchange in Manchester, Beautiful: The Carol King Musical, Thriller Live and The Rat Pack LIVE! (all in the West End).

 

On Tuesday this week it was announced that the show had been nominated for 4 Olivier Awards including Best New Musical, Best Actor in a Musical for Arinzé Kene, Best Actress in a Supporting Role in a Musical for Gabrielle Brooks and Best Original Score or New Orchestration for Orchestrator Simon Hale.

Award-winning director Clint Dyer channels the creative quest and spiritual power of a universally embraced icon, in this critically acclaimed production which features Marley’s magical, revolutionary songs and a book by award-winning Lee Hall.

Lose yourself to the rhythm of 'Exodus', 'No Woman No Cry', 'Waiting in Vain', 'Three Little Birds', ‘I Shot the Sheriff’, 'Could You Be Loved', 'Redemption Song' and many more.

The explosive production celebrates the immense life and timely message of Jamaican soul rebel Bob Marley - from a life of poverty to visionary international superstar. Crucial fellow soul rebels in the cast include the sensational Rita Marley and the I Three and his inspiring brothers in arms, Peter Tosh, Bunny Wailer and Lee ‘Scratch Perry’.

 

The full cast features Michael Duke (Bob Marley), Gabrielle Brooks (Rita Marley), Shanay Holmes (Cindy Breakspeare), Sophia Mackay (Judy Mowatt), Melissa Brown-Taylor (Marcia Griffiths), Jacade Simpson (Bunny Wailer), Natey Jones (Peter Tosh), David Albury (Alternate Bob Marley) Daniel Bailey, Craig Blake, Charles Blyth, Luke Buck, Maxwell Cole, Athena Collins, Viquichele Cross, Kimmy Edwards, Raphael Estavia, Henry Faber, Cannon Hay, Llewellyn Jamal, Savanna Jeffrey, Kieran McGinn, Rohan Pinnock-Hamilton, Cleopatra Rey, Julene Robinson, Lawrence Rowe, Nate Simpson, Amarra Smith, Archie Smith, Declan Spaine, Jaime Tait, Teddy Wills

 

‘It’s not all that glitters is gold, half the story has never been told’ 

 

From the hills of rural Jamaica, armed only with his overwhelming talent, Bob Marley applied himself with resolute determination to achieve international acclaim for his prophetic musical message – a gospel of love and unity.


photo credit: Craig Sugden

Get Up, Stand Up! The Bob Marley Musical Extends Booking Period

Friday, 11 March 2022

Monday, 21 February 2022

Carrie Hope Fletcher Announces Debut UK Tour


Actress, author, vlogger and award-winning West End sensation Carrie Hope Fletcher is heading out on her first ever UK tour.

Carrie Hope Fletcher - An Open Book will see the musical theatre star play a series of unmissable theatre shows in May and June 2023.

Performing songs from her incredible career expect fan favourites including hits from Heathers, Les Miserables, The Addams Family and many more interspersed with chat about Carrie’s fascinating life and career.

Tickets go on sale at 10am Friday and are available from www.cuffeandtaylor.com

Carrie Hope Fletcher - An Open Book 2023
18-May Bradford, St George's Hall
21-May Southampton, Mayflower Theatre
22-May Norwich, Theatre Royal
25-May London, The London Palladium
27-May Llandudno, Venue Cymru
28-May Salford, The Lowry
29-May Birmingham, Symphony Hall
31-May Sheffield, City Hall
02-Jun Nottingham, Royal Concert Hall
03-Jun Newcastle, O2 City Hall
04-Jun Edinburgh, Festival Theatre

Speaking about Carrie Hope Fletcher - An Open Book, Carrie said: “I am absolutely thrilled to be taking on my first ever UK tour.

“This is something I have wanted to do for some time and next year presents the perfect opportunity.

I absolutely adore being on stage and am fortunate to have performed across the West End and overseas, but there’s something very special about theatres around the UK so I can’t wait to get out on the road and visit these absolutely fantastic and beautiful venues.”

Currently wowing West End audiences in the title role of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Cinderella, Carrie - who has an impressive three WhatsOnStage Awards - has enjoyed a breath-taking career since her West End debut at the age of nine playing Young Éponine in Les Misérables. Since then Carrie’s theatre credits include Fantine in Les Miserables: The Concert, Veronica in Heathers, Wednesday in The Addams Family, Eponine in Les Misérables, both Truly Scrumptious and Jemima in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Beth in Jeff Wayne’s War of the Worlds and Jane Banks in Mary Poppins.

And when she’s not treading the boards of the West End’s biggest stages Carrie is also a best-selling novelist, Top 20 recording artist and respected vlogger with her popular self-titled music and vlog channel attracting more than a million views a month.

Carrie Hope Fletcher - An Open Book is presented by Lambert Jackson, Live Nation and Cuffe and Taylor.

Jamie Lambert, of Lambert Jackson, said: “Carrie Hope Fletcher - An Open Book presents an opportunity to take one of the West End’s most celebrated and successful leading stars to theatres across the UK.

“Not only will audiences be wowed by the stunning voice of Carrie, they will also get an insight into her incredible career and that is not to be missed.”

Cuffe and Taylor Director of Theatre Touring Ben Hatton added: “We are very excited to be presenting Carrie’s debut UK tour.

“She is the most wonderful musical theatre talent and so much more. Audiences will absolutely love this show.”

For more information about Carrie Hope Fletcher - An Open Book and to secure tickets head to www.cuffeandtaylor.com

photo credit: Michael Wharley

Carrie Hope Fletcher Announces Debut UK Tour

Monday, 21 February 2022

Wednesday, 9 February 2022

Mamma Mia! The Party Extends Booking to October 2022



Mamma Mia! The Party, London’s premier dining experience, has extended its booking period due to extraordinary demand and is now playing to Sunday 2 October 2022. Tickets for the new booking period at The O2 London are now on sale.

Created by ABBA’s Björn Ulvaeus, Mamma Mia! The Party is a unique and magical experience in a class of its own, bringing all your favourite hits to life more vividly than ever before: over the course of four glittering hours, guests can immerse themselves in a spectacular musical extravaganza, a four-course Greek feast and an ABBA disco, all in one unforgettable evening of dancing, dining and singing!

Food is at the heart of the experience and a new menu has been created that collects the finest Greece has to offer, made from the best, freshest ingredients. Our guests will be served with a traditional meze followed by the iconic Greek salad of fresh cherry tomatoes, cucumber and feta. For the main course, confit lamb shoulder and slow-cooked beef are served with roasted garlic potatoes, courgettes peperonata, romesco and aromatic jus. For our vegetarian and vegan guests, we present roasted cauliflower with a lemon-herb dressing and stuffed tomato with lentil ragout. A sumptuous Greek lemon cake served with confit orange skin and citrus yoghurt is the perfect end to this delicious meal. For our vegan guests, we are serving traditional loukoumades, delicious dough balls accompanied by a sweet fig jam.

Guests can get the ultimate Mamma Mia! The Party experience with one of our packages. The Platinum Package gives you a Tier A ticket in a prime location, a meet & greet and photo opportunity with members of the cast, champagne on arrival, half a bottle of wine and a Mamma Mia! The Party merchandise party pack. Guests can also upgrade their existing booking by adding the VIP upgrade package taking their experience to the next level with champagne on arrival, half a bottle of wine and a Mamma Mia! The Party merchandise party pack.

The London cast includes Fed Zanni as Nikos, Steph Parry as Kate, Linda John Pierre as Debbie, AJ Bentley as Adam, Julia Imbach as Kostantina, Allie Ho Chee as Bella, Kimberly Powell as Nina, Dawn Spence as Grandma and Gregor Stewart as Fernando. Also in the cast are Oscar Balmaseda, Jonathon Bentley, Molly Cleere and Jessica Spalis. The musicians are John Donovan, Luke Higgins, Kathryn Tindall, Steve Rushton and Mark Pusey.

Mamma Mia! The Party is set in a taverna on the beautiful Greek island of Skopelos, where most exteriors of the first Mamma Mia! film were shot. Nikos and his wife Kate run this exotic and wonderful restaurant together with their family and friends. Told through dialogue and timeless ABBA songs, a warm, romantic and funny story evolves and unfolds during the evening, taking place around the guests as they sit at their tables enjoying a gourmet Greek meal. The evening ends with a 1970s disco, where audience members are welcome to stay to sing and dance to ABBA recordings.

Mamma Mia! The Party has music and lyrics by Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus (some songs with Stig Anderson), and a story by Calle Norlén, Roine Söderlundh and Björn Ulvaeus, with the English book by writer, comedian and broadcaster Sandi Toksvig.

The London version of Mamma Mia! The Party, which originally opened in Stockholm in January 2016, is co-directed and choreographed by Stacey Haynes and Roine Söderlundh, with set designed by Bengt Fröderberg, lighting designed by Patrick Woodroffe, sound designed by Gareth Owen, costumes designed by Annsofi Nyberg, music supervision by Robin Svensson and casting by David Grindrod for Grindrod Burton Associates.

Mamma Mia! The Party is executively produced by Björn Ulvaeus and produced by Sally Davies for U-Live.

Mamma Mia! The Party Extends Booking to October 2022

Wednesday, 9 February 2022

Dirty Dancing, Dominion Theatre | Review


Dirty Dancing
Dominion Theatre 
Reviewed on Tuesday 8th February 2022
★★★½

Dirty Dancing is one of the cult classic films that's beloved by many generations and continually stands the test of time, so a stage version has a built in audience. The show is a faithful adaptation of the film, following the story of 'Baby' Houseman as she spends a family holiday discovering love, relationships, sex and inequality.

There's also a number of subplots including an illegal abortion and the civil rights movement which doesn't quite land and feels somewhat shoehorned in but is a nice attempt at making an otherwise surface level show have some depth. Parts of the plot are lacklustre but overall it's a fun revival that doesn't take itself too seriously.

Filling Patrick Swayze's shoes as leading man Johnny Castle is definitely a tough job but Michael O'Reilly does so excellently and has the audience in the palm of his hand from the moment he enters in a Disney prince fashion. His dancing is skilful and he uses the minimal dialogue to command the stage and draw attention throughout, as well as showing a more vulnerable side to the character in the second act.

Kira Malou is wonderful as Baby, showcasing her character growth and dancing ability brilliantly. As a character Baby can be annoying at moments but Kira does a great job of making her seem real and brings her concerns and values to life in a way that feels genuine without being over the top or too whiney.


As her sister Lisa, Lizzie Ottley is delightful, bringing her comedic timing to the role and being a step behind just at the right time. Carlie Milner is a complete stand out as Penny, providing energy, legginess and such precision in her dancing, she's an absolute dream to watch and also gives a touching acting performance.

Aside from the dancing this is really a show about the music, which is so iconic. Whilst all the classic tunes are included in the show, I do wish there was more singing as opposed to some of the instrumental or extremely brief moments of song. Some vocal treats however, are provided by Mimi Rodrigues Alves who is fab. Additionally the Kellerman's band are first-rate as they become part of the on stage action.

Despite its shortcomings, Dirty Dancing is a lovely, feel-good tribute to the film. There's iconic moments aplenty, sleek lifts, sweet romance, a big dose of nostalgia and all in all it's a lot of fun. Did I have the time of my life? Not quite. But was it an enjoyable, carefree night out at the theatre? Absolutely!

Dirty Dancing plays at the Dominion Theatre until 16th April 2022

photo credit: Mark Senior

Dirty Dancing, Dominion Theatre | Review

Tuesday, 8 February 2022

Evelyn Hoskins on Returning to the Diner Post Pandemic | Waitress the Musical | Interview

I think once you’ve seen the show, if it connects with you, you do get a little bit hooked on it!

Waitress, based on the 2007 movie of the same title, follows the story of Jenna, a woman who longs to escape the life she's trapped in. Alongside her friends and her handsome new gynaecologist, she begins to step towards the dreams she's always harboured. Since taking the West End by storm, Waitress is now delighting audiences across the country. Evelyn Hoskins plays Jenna's lovable friend Dawn who's looking for love of her own. Evelyn spoke to us about taking the show on the road and how the pandemic changed her portrayal...


If you were telling someone who knows nothing about Waitress why they should see it, how would you sum it up?

It’s the most joyous, hilarious, heartwarming, life-affirming, beautiful show you could possibly see, especially if you’re a woman!


Is there a song in Waitress that makes you particularly emotional?

Definitely A Soft Place to Land. It’s the song before they sort of glow-up Dawn a little bit before her date and it’s just beautiful. The harmonies are stunning.


You’ve had a kind of different experience with Dawn because you played her pre and post pandemic. So, what was it like originally creating your version of Dawn and do you think she’s changed since you’ve come back to the show?

She’s definitely changed. I saw the original Broadway cast of Waitress in 2016 so I saw Kimiko Glenn play Dawn and Kimiko and I both played a role called Thea in Spring Awakening so we’re obviously similar castings anyway; but I think I was definitely influenced by Kimiko’s portrayal because that was my first impression of Dawn. 


My portrayal has changed since the pandemic, for sure. I mean, more so because I just feel older if I’m honest; and also I'm more grateful to be here. I was grateful anyway because it’s such a dream show and job of mine but now I feel super grateful.


When you were doing the show at the Adelphi, were you already booked to do the tour?

No I wasn’t. The resident director had kind of asked me if I’d be interested but at the time I was due to do six months in the West End so I was a bit like “I don’t know, maybe, I’ll see how I’m feeling” cause obviously a year is a long time. And then when the show closed in the West End, the producers were very kind and asked all of us if we’d be interested and I was like, yeah, because I didn’t feel done with her at all. I’d barely touched the surface so I’m so glad to be doing it.


How was it when you reopened, did you find it emotional?

Yep! I think I was more emotional on the first day of rehearsals when we did a full read and sing through first thing on the Monday morning. Obviously I hadn’t heard the music since the last show so that was super emotional. Also putting on the little waitress dress again!


You know, when we closed it was so uncertain and the tour got pushed back and pushed back, and we didn’t know if it would actually ever happen so it’s so good to be back!




So far, have you noticed any differences between touring the show and playing on the West End?

It’s very interesting to see the different reactions, I don’t know if I could pinpoint what they are though but Northern audiences have been PHENOMENAL, very very loud!


We’re in Bristol this week which I’m super excited about because it’s near my home town and it’ll be great to get to Woking and then we’re in Bromley so we’ll have some more London audiences. But it’s just a really great show to take around the country and make accessible to people.


Definitely, and here compared to the US, people don’t know the film as much so it’s more of a word of mouth show which must be lovely...


Yeah! Honestly I was really surprised at the reaction. We’re sold out most Saturdays and the audiences have been incredible. We also have some very loyal fans and we often see familiar faces most weeks. I think once you’ve seen the show, if it connects with you, you do get a little bit hooked on it!


That’s so lovely, I’m coming to see it with my mum who’s very excited!


I think it’s a phenomenal show to see with your mum! Bring the women in your life because it’s got such girl power.


Leading on nicely, I wanted to know why you think having a female led show like Waitress tour the country is so important?

The themes of the show are so important. There’s the domestic abuse theme which really strengthens the message and importance of female friendship and female support.


I also think it’s important that we start recognising that the other relationships in our life are just as important as the romantic ones and that’s something this show does.

What’s your best piece of advice for aspiring performers?

Believe in yourself. That sounds super cliched but it’s true. My personal experience is not like a traditional one. I’m from quite a working class background. I didn’t grow up with lots of money which obviously would help you if you wanna go to drama school. But, I didn’t do drama school.


So it’s really about the hustle. Just hustle hard. If you really like an actor’s performance, find out who they’re represented by. Reach out to them and say I really like your client, I feel like I would be a good fit for you too. Same with casting directors, if you really enjoy a show and think it would be something you could do, write to them, tell them how much you like the show, just put yourself out there. And don’t feel like drama school is the be all and end all!


Thank you so much to Evelyn for taking the time to chat to me. Waitress runs at the New Victoria Theatre, Woking from 14th to 19th February before continuing its tour.


Interview by Olivia Mitchell, Editor


photo credit: Johan Persson

Evelyn Hoskins on Returning to the Diner Post Pandemic | Waitress the Musical | Interview

Tuesday, 8 February 2022