Showing posts sorted by date for query Georgina Castle. Sort by relevance Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by date for query Georgina Castle. Sort by relevance Show all posts

Thursday 6 July 2023

Initial Cast Announced for Elf the Musical at the Dominion Theatre this Winter

Celebrating its 20th anniversary since the original release of the motion picture featuring the talented Will Ferrell, the worldwide sensation and holiday classic, Elf, is set to grace London's Dominion Theatre once again. Following its overwhelming success last year, the smash-hit musical adaptation returns for a second consecutive year, delighting audiences from 15 November 2023 until 6 January 2024.

Returning to reprise their memorable roles are the talented Georgina Castle, known for her performances in Dirty Dancing and Mamma Mia, as Jovie, and Rebecca Lock, renowned for her roles in The Phantom of the Opera and Avenue Q, as Emily Hobbs. Nicholas Pound, recognised for his appearances in Cats and The Rocky Horror Show, brings Santa to life once again, while the multi-talented Kim Ismay, known for her roles in Wicked and Saturday Night Fever, takes on the character of Debs. Dermot Canavan, celebrated for his performances in Hairspray and Oklahoma!, embodies the Store Manager. Stay tuned for further casting announcements, including new actors who will portray the roles of Buddy and Walter Hobbs.

Based on the beloved 2003 New Line Cinema hit, Elf features a captivating book by Tony Award-winners Thomas Meehan (Annie, The Producers, Hairspray) and Bob Martin (The Drowsy Chaperone), accompanied by enchanting songs composed by Tony Award nominees Matthew Sklar and Chad Beguelin (The Wedding Singer).

This production will once again be brought to life under the expert direction of Philip Wm. McKinley, with choreography by Liam Steel. The original set and costume designs by Tim Goodchild, along with lighting design by Patrick Woodroffe, immersive sound by Gareth Owen, and video design by Ian William Galloway, will transport the audience into Buddy's world. The casting process will be overseen by Grindrod Burton Casting.

Elf tells the heartwarming and humorous tale of Buddy, a baby who accidentally finds himself in Santa's gift bag and is whisked away to the North Pole. Raised as an elf, Buddy remains unaware of his human origins, but his size and toy-making struggles eventually lead him to discover the truth—he's not an elf and will never truly fit in at the North Pole. With Santa's blessing, Buddy embarks on an extraordinary journey to New York, in search of his birth father, to uncover his true identity, and to remind the city of the genuine spirit of Christmas.

photo credit: Mark Senior

Friday 25 November 2022

Elf The Musical, Dominion Theatre | Review

Elf The Musical
Dominion Theatre
Reviewed on Thursday 24th November 2022 by Olivia Mitchell 

If you're looking for some festive magic this year, look no further than the Dominion Theatre for their gloriously Christmassy, sparkly production of Elf The Musical. Based on the cult classic film, it tells the story of Buddy the Elf who finds out he's really a human, so makes the journey from the North Pole to New York City to meet his biological father and experience the world. This musical adaptation has all the most iconic parts of the film plus a heap of theatrical magic that makes it the perfect festive treat.

This version of the show does a superb job of being laugh out loud funny and completely joyous without overstepping into pantomime territory; it's entertaining for all the family but not in a way that has you cringing at the jokes. Of course it's saccharine and over the top but isn't that what Christmas is all about?! At the heart of the story and its success is Simon Lipkin as Buddy, who takes on the role with complete joy and authenticity. Having previously given a starring performance in Nativity The Musical,  Lipkin clearly has the Christmas magic which makes him such a dream to watch.  From shredding paper to create snow to joyfully rollerskating, Buddy is an exuberant and endearing character who you can't help but love. 

Alongside the humour, Lipkin also plays Buddy with a lovely vulnerability which comes across at various points, especially during his encounters with Jovie (played brilliantly by Georgina Castle) when he is completely overwhelmed by her "miraculous" self. His naivety comes across in an authentic and touching way, that doesn't stray into slapstick and gives a real depth to the plot. 

The rest of the cast are incredibly strong throughout. Rebecca Lock is treat as Buddy's step-mum who's heart is slowly opened to Christmas; her duet in Act Two with Buddy's brother (Logan Clark) is absolutely outstanding. Tom Chambers is good as the businessman, absent father whilst Kim Ismay has some really witty moments as his secretary and the pair are great together. Another stand out performance comes from Dermot Canavan who is hilariously entertaining as the Macy's Manager. The ensemble give a really punchy performance, especially when performing Liam Steel's choreography. There's great variety in the show from jaded Santa's giving an impassioned, Newsies-esque display to a full company tap number which is marvellous.

Philip WM. McKinley's direction brings abundant joy to the stage as well as a healthy dose of magic. Tim Goodchild's set is suitably whimsical and there are some certified wow moments through a recreation of the Rockefeller Centre ice rink and some real life snow.

As a whole Elf The Musical is a perfectly packaged Christmas show, which has commercial elements to appeal to the masses as well as some theatrical gems for regular theatre goers. It's a wonderfully enjoyable show that's well worth a visit. Take a trip to the Dominion Theatre, have your elf a very Merry Christmas and feel the festive spirit from your head to your mistletoes!

photo credit: Mark Senior

Wednesday 30 October 2019

9 to 5 The Musical (UK Tour), Wales Millennium Centre | Review

9 to 5 (UK Tour)
Wales Millennium Centre
Reviewed on Tuesday 29th October 2019 by Elisha Harris

9 to 5 The Musical is a sensational representation of what women had to endure when it was believed to be a ‘man's world’. Something which still plagues the modern day but is fortunately diminishing.

There’s nothing like escaping from your 9 to 5 reality to witness a world-class musical, and this production is most definitely that! This show is so unpredictable from start to finish. and everything is perfection. 

Amber Davies is impeccable, her comedic timing and powerhouse voice make for a perfect Judy. Amber presents the the purest transition from a reserved, meek housewife to a fearless, self assured business woman who will not take no for an answer.

The other two leading ladies, Caroline Sheen, who's temporarily moved from the West End production to the UK tour, and Georgina Castle blow the roof off the Millennium Centre. Between Caroline’s quick wit and gorgeous voice, and Georgina’s mesmerising vocal range, they compliment each other perfectly. I could listen to them sing all day long! 

The standout performance of the evening is Sean Needham who plays the ballsy, know it all boss, Franklin Hart Jr. He portrays the dishonest, antagonistic boss excellently. Sean really brings the role to life, he is witty, insanely entertaining and his facial expressions are priceless. For a character you’re meant to hate, it's hard not to belly laugh at every line he says- a real comical genius!

Overall this production is not one to miss, the ensemble are brilliant, the sound design is excellent, you can hear every voice individually when needed yet the harmonies were perfect. If you want to spend 2 hours in side-splitting, ball crunching laughter, 9 to 5 is the show for you! 

9 to 5 The Musical plays at the Wales Millennium Centre until 2nd November before continuing its tour

Wednesday 16 October 2019

9 to 5 the Musical (UK Tour), New Victoria Theatre | Review

9 to 5 the Musical (UK Tour)
New Victoria Theatre
Reviewed on Friday 20th October 2017 by Glenys Balchin

9 to 5 is a very enjoyable show, with strong performances by the cast, a great set, fabulous costumes and toe tapping songs to sing-a-long to. The three leading ladies give excellent performances with each having their own individual strength. It certainly feels like a West End performance rather than a touring show at a regional theatre. The storyline is executed well and takes the audience to the final conclusion that it is a man’s world.

The three leading ladies work exceedingly well together, as a band of sisters and leave us with the hope that they are that strong and united off the stage as well. Violet is played by Laura Tyrer, who is the whole package with a charismatic personality and triple threat abilities that wow; she shines within the cast.
Judy played by Amber Davies for me is the real surprise of the night, having last seen her on Love Island. I hadn’t envisaged that she is such a great singer but Get Out and Stay Out is a real highlight as she belts it out so powerfully. Georgina Castle as Doralee gives a very good performance with only the occasional blip in her deep south American accent. It is a hard act to follow when the legend that is Dolly Parton, announces at the beginning of the show that Doralee “is her”! This could colour your opinion of her performance but Georgina held her own and made the role hers.
Accolade, also must go to Lucinda Lawrence who is Roz Keith and gives a strong performance as the pent up frosty, delusional, hopelessly in love secret admirer of Franklin Hart Jnr. Her comedic timing, balletic dance movement and strong singing voice make her a very watchable character.
Sean Needham’s, performance as the male chauvinist Franklin Hart Jnr is perfect, he portrays the male ego eccentricities and bigoted views of women, in a comic manner. But these are issues that have truthfully been faced by many of the women in the audience. Both Lawrence and Needham have a real chemical interaction with each other and work well as a comedy act.
The rest of the cast give a great performance, supporting the main characters and story line with energy and enthusiasm to deliver an excellent show. I have to mention one person that stands out for me in the ensemble is Ross Lee Fowkes who plays Bob; his acting singing and dancing showed great intensity, I was quite transfixed.

Finally, as already mentioned the stage lighting, the scenery and costumes are all perfect for the 80s story line. Having been a girl of the shoulder pads and big hair era, it is all well delivered. It is sad that the political message, that both Jane Fonda and Patricia Resnick so, cleverly put across in a comedic approach on film and stage is still an on-going fight forty-one years on from the film release. I expect that it will be our children’s, children who will finally benefit from equality.
Patricia Resnick has said, “that it won’t be until 2059 that American women will achieve pay equity”. That will be 80 years on since the film was released. I believe that most women could step forward and give an account of male chauvinism and sexual predators in the work place. The show delivers this message in a funny and comic style with great songs but really it is quite sad and profound that we are still talking equality in the 21st-century. There should be a sequel, a comic-tragedy featuring recent events and the “me too” campaign that shows we still have a long way to go. 
I would recommend taking your daughters along to see the show and explaining to them why it was produced and what the political message is behind it, and for them to be firmly told that they are equal to the males in their life. All that said and done, I just wanted to say it was a great show, very watchable and I really enjoyed it and would recommend to others.
9 to 5 the Musical runs at the New Victoria Theatre until 19th October before continuing its tour