Review: Everybody’s Talking About Jamie

Layton Williams and Shane Ritchie join Rebecca McKinnis in the new cast through May 4, 2019. Correct me if I’m wrong but there seems to be only two original British musicals in the West End right now…both filled with Queens! And one of them is still playing to sold-out energised crowds at the Apollo Theatre.… Continue reading Review: Everybody’s Talking About Jamie

10 More Cast Albums You Should Be Listening To

By now I’m sure you’ve listened to those 10 albums I went on about in a previous article, which can be found here, so switch over from Six and Waitress for a second because here are 10 more..and..you’re welcome! In no particular order… Tarzan Welcome to your new obsession. One of Disney’s attempts to replicate the worldwide phenomenon that is… Continue reading 10 More Cast Albums You Should Be Listening To

Dream Casting: Waitress West End

Sugar. Butter. Casting. So one of my dreams for next year has come true with the exciting news of Waitress being just around the corner, beginning at the Adelphi Theatre in February 2019. So for fun – strictly fun – I know people get ancy about these sorts of things, but this is just for fun, nothing serious or offensive – I thought I’d share my perfect casting for the first UK production of this beautiful show. I’m sure we are getting a cast announcement just around the corner anyways, but…

Joe – Bruce Montague
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Bruce is currently playing Abner Dillon (in 42nd Street at Theatre Royal Drury Lane) which is a small, but very funny role and Montague brings something great and memorable to it. He looks the part of Joe and would be able to pull off that cheeky humour while also bringing heart to it.

Cal – Delroy Atkinson
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I most recently saw Atkinson in Sylvia at the Old Vic and he was hilarious which made me think what a great Cal he would be. He fits the role and would make a great paring with my Becky I have selected. Also, the West End needs more BAME representation, which I have done with this cast without realising.

Earl – Jon Robyns
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For the douche-boyfriend role I went with Robyns who I always enjoy on-stage. And again, I picture him in the role so vividly. He can play pretty much everything so I’m sure it wouldn’t take much for me to hate him for a change.

Ogie – Daniel Buckley
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Buckley is hysterical and steals every scene he’s in currently, playing Ferris in Eugenius! at The Other Palace. He can sure as hell sing it and has a great presence and charm about him which would be perfect for Ogie – audiences would root for him so easily.

Dawn – Asmeret Ghebermichael
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Asmeret is incredible. Currently as Lorrell in Dreamgirls at the Savoy, she never fails to blow me away with her comic timing and vocal ability. I am wishing for her to play the lovable Dawn, I think she would bring so much flexibility to the role which has possibly not been done before.

Becky – Marisha Wallace
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For this role, you need a voice and a half. And Marisha, currently Effie in Dreamgirls alongside Asmeret, would be a dream. Her version of “I Didn’t Plan It” would blow the Adelphi roof off every night. She would always give it sass and attitude, and bounce off Delroy so easily. Perfect casting if I do say so myself!

Dr. Pomatter – Sam Palladio
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This was a hard one because having seen the OG Drew Gheling on Broadway I can’t imagine anyone else being as good as him, so all the leading men of the West End went through my head until I thought of this curve-ball. First, if you have not watched Nashville then you need to straight away because it’s the best TV show ever. But anyway.. if you don’t know him, Sam was a lead in that show and is an amazing singer-songwriter in his own right. He is also a very powerful and charismatic actor. So he can basically do anything. Business-wise (ugh) he might bring in a few more bums-on-seats, but I really chose him because I think he would be amazing in this role and it’s a crime he hasn’t done any theatre yet! And what better a role to make his West End debut with!

Jenna – Rebecca Trehearn 

So many choices I can’t even begin. I understand this is quite a sensitive subject at the moment just because they are casting right now, and everyone wants it. But as I said, I mean nothing by this, just doing it, ‘cus. But in a selfish way, fuck me Rebecca’s voice singing this score would be to die for. This woman is one of my all-time favourite actresses and singers. The way she emotionally approaches material and her incredibly rich, unique tone suits what this show is looking for down to a T. Her “She Used to Be Mine” would be so emotional I might internally combust. Please Theatre Gods, make it happen!

West End Shows We Need in 2019

Like many others I am still holding out for West End productions of the likes of Newsies and Next to Normal (like, c’mon already), so I thought I would delve back into an ideal world in which the show matters and the celebrity doesn’t bring in the cash, what a simpler world that would be. Anyways… Continue reading West End Shows We Need in 2019

My Top 6 Favourite Composers

So this was probably the hardest list to compile, which is why I’ve been pondering it for so long, but each of these writers have managed to make me laugh, cry and just about feel every emotion possible with their incredible work.
And before you say, I realise I have no women in this list which isn’t intention before anyone starts getting all internet-crazy on me, there just isn’t a woman in my top 6, that’s all. But come to think of it, they’re aren’t a hell of a lot of female composers out there producing on a commercial scale – we really do need to change that!

 

6. Stephen Sondheim

I don’t think any list would be without this extraordinary man. His brain must be so interesting, whatever is going on in their, I want some. From Sweeney Todd to Into the Woods, all of his works educate you, impress you, as well as sound incredible. I love the fact that he prefers ‘actors who can sing, not singers who can act’ – that’s a real poignant idea that shows us Sondheim knows what real theatre should be. A recent discovery of his I found was Follies when I saw it last year and this song still takes my breath away.

 

5. Tim Minchin

Again, another guy who must have the most fascinating brain. How Minchin manages to write the most varied array of songs as well as musicals such as Matilda and Groundhog Day with such ease is worthy of every highest praise. This example “Cont” is a perfect example of how people behave in life, which is what Minchin does best, taps into your phyci, making you think and feel for the human condition.

 

4. Lin-Manuel Miranda

No wonder this guy has shot to fame as he has. Lin writes unlike anyone else, the way he bends lyrics and tuneful melodies together to create something you can tap your feet to, but as the same time, leave something worth saying. Before Hamilton though, he wrote one of my all-time favourites, In the Heights; I love the power of “Inutil” and how it tells you so much in such a short time.

 

3. Jason Robert Brown

Likewise, Brown is so skilled in telling a whole story in a single song, as well as in full musical form (“The Last Five Years” is a true masterpiece!) I love Brown’s approach to telling stories, the intricacies and underrated melodies that capture, much like Sondheim, the state and emotion of what makes us human. “Someone to Fall Back On” is a perfect example of a stand-alone, relatable and beautiful song that tells a whole story.

 

2. Scott Alan

If you’re unfamiliar with Alan’s work, then get on it! The shear true emotion with which Scott writes is unparalleled. I have have the pleasure of seeing him perform a few times in concerts and only then do you see that all his work comes from a very personal place, but out of that darkness always comes something truly remarkable. “Anything Worth Holding Onto” will break you (sorry ’bout that!)

 

1. Frank Wildhorn

Wildhorn’s writing is big and bold – he writes for people with vocals that can shatter a building basically. Some of my all-time favourite scores are his, from Jekyll and Hyde, to Bonnie and Clyde, to Wonderland – musical perfection that I could listen to on repeat. There is something about the way he composes, there is a rhythm to it and when you’ve got a 11-O’Clock belting number, you know you’ve got it! “Vienna” is a stand-alone song that Wildhorn wrote for ex-wife Linda Eder (my favourite vocalist!). The emotion, clarity and incredible orchestrations just blow me away.