Olivier Awards 2019

Theatre has been my passion since I can remember and although in the past couple of years I’ve not been blogging as actively about my best loved genre of entertainment, it’s never left my radar.

Last night’s Olivier Awards reignited the theatrical spark for me and there are shows I will make it my mission to see – especially given the superb performances of excerpts from many of the nominated productions. From the magnificent Disney’s The Lion King to the stonking new musical Come From Away to Six – a pop concert style musical like no other I’ve seen before – the West End is packed with shows to suit every taste. The Tina Turner musical also looks incredible and if you heard Adrienne Warren who plays the real life legend, I’m sure you can’t fail to agree that she does Ms Turner proud and then some! Rosalie Craig made me feel alive with her rendition of Being Alive from Company and a finale featuring such wonderment as the stunning cast of Olivier winner Sir Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake was a dream come true. Jason Manford was a superb host, witty and offering up relevant comedy, I found the comment about the over-charging in theatre bars particularly poignantly funny. He showed off his musical theatre side with the fantastic Janie Dee and Ruthie Henshall in tow, which was an unexpected treat indeed.

What of the award winners in the hotly contested categories? Although I’ve yet to see the show as I don’t frequent London as often as I would like, I’m delighted for Company, Jonathan Bailey and Patti Lupone – worthy winners in the Best Actor in a Supporting Role in a Musical category, Best Actress in a Supporting Role in a Musical category and Best Musical Revival. Judging by the immense performance given by the cast of Come From Away, their Best New Musical win (amongst other awards) was well deserved, the production stars one of my favourite performers, Jenna Boyd, it’s got to be worth a watch just to see her! Catherine Zuber should also be congratulated, her costume design for The King And I is a triumph and she should rightly be celebrated. Shout out to my favourite Donna and the Dynamos, Sara Poyzer, Kate Graham and Ricky Butt who presented that particular award in their Mamma Mia! costumes. Porgy and Bess was also on my radar and a winner from the Best Opera nominations which I had high hopes for. I must also add my congratulations to the terrific super-talent Monica Dolan for her win for Best Actress in a Supporting Role award for All About Eve. I haven’t seen the play yet but Monica Dolan is a chameleon on an actress and wows me in all she does.

Here’s the full list of winners….

BEST ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN A MUSICAL

Jonathan Bailey for Company at Gielgud Theatre

BEST ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN A MUSICAL

Patti LuPone for Company at Gielgud Theatre

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT IN MUSIC

Come From Away – Book, Music and Lyrics: David Hein and Irene Sankoff; Music Supervisor, Arrangements: Ian Eisendrath; Orchestrations: August Eriksmoen; Musical Director/UK Music Supervisor: Alan Berry; and the band of Come From Away at Phoenix Theatre

BEST NEW DANCE PRODUCTION

Blkdog by Botis Seva at Sadler’s Wells

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT IN DANCE

Akram Khan for his performance in Xenos at Sadler’s Wells

BEST ENTERTAINMENT AND FAMILY

A Monster Calls at The Old Vic

BEST THEATRE CHOREOGRAPHER

Kelly Devine for Come From Away at Phoenix Theatre

MAGIC RADIO BEST MUSICAL REVIVAL

Company at Gielgud Theatre

BEST ACTOR IN A MUSICAL

Kobna Holdbrook-Smith for Tina – The Tina Turner Musical at Aldwych Theatre

BEST ACTRESS IN A MUSICAL

Sharon D. Clarke for Caroline, Or Change at Playhouse Theatre

CUNARD BEST REVIVAL

Summer And Smoke at Almeida Theatre and Duke of York’s Theatre

BEST NEW COMEDY

Home, I’m Darling at National Theatre – Dorfman and Duke of York’s Theatre

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT IN AFFILIATE THEATRE

Flesh And Bone at Soho Theatre

WHITE LIGHT AWARD FOR BEST LIGHTING DESIGN

Jon Clark for The Inheritance at Young Vic and Noël Coward Theatre

ROYAL ALBERT HALL AWARD FOR BEST SOUND DESIGN

Gareth Owen for Come From Away at Phoenix Theatre

BEST COSTUME DESIGN

Catherine Zuber for The King And I at The London Palladium

BLUE-I THEATRE TECHNOLOGY AWARD FOR BEST SET DESIGN

Bunny Christie for Company at Gielgud Theatre

BEST ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE

Chris Walley for The Lieutenant Of Inishmore at Noël Coward Theatre

BEST ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE

Monica Dolan for All About Eve at Noël Coward Theatre

BEST NEW OPERA PRODUCTION

Katya Kabanova at Royal Opera House

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT IN OPERA

The ensemble of Porgy And Bess at London Coliseum

BEST ACTOR

Kyle Soller for The Inheritance at Young Vic and Noël Coward Theatre

BEST ACTRESS

Patsy Ferran for Summer And Smoke at Almeida Theatre and Duke of York’s Theatre

SIR PETER HALL AWARD FOR BEST DIRECTOR

Stephen Daldry for The Inheritance at Young Vic and Noël Coward Theatre

AMERICAN AIRLINES BEST NEW PLAY

The Inheritance at Young Vic and Noël Coward Theatre

MASTERCARD BEST NEW MUSICAL

Come From Away at Phoenix Theatre

SOCIETY OF LONDON THEATRE SPECIAL AWARD

Sir Matthew Bourne

You can book tickets for the West End Theatre shows here: Break A Leg Ticket Shop

Photo Credit for Come From Away – Matthew Murphy

Other Photo Credits: YouTube

A Few of my Favourite Things…

As an entertainment and lifestyle blogger I’m always asked about my favourites, especially when I interview performers and creatives, I put the spotlight on them and more often than not the cheeky devils turn the tables on me! What’s my favourite musical, favourite play, who do I aspire to be? So, in the same way that every good website has a FAQs section, I thought I’d let you all in on my favourite things!

Favourite Musical

I’ve named this blogpost A Few of my Favourite Things, not because The Sound of Music is top of the list in the musical theatre stakes – although I do have a place in my heart for the show and I loved the incarnation which toured fairly recently and starred the superb Pippa Winslow and Zoe Ann Bown.

I digress, Blood Brothers is my all-time favourite musical. I can watch it over and over, I could watch it back to back and never get bored. I jump at the gunshot every time, I cry at different scenes but I do always cry. My favourite songs from the show have never changed, ‘My Child’ and ‘Show Upon The Table’. Musical theatre numbers at their best, give them a listen!

Narrowly missing the number one spot are:

  1. Phantom of the Opera (favourite Phantom is the mighty Ramin Karimloo!)
  2. The Girls (‘Silent Night’ sung by Claire Machin is quite a moment…)
  3. Mamma Mia (the ultimate feel-good musical and the current West End cast are insanely good)

Favourite Opera

Opera is a recent addition to my list of happy places and it’s all thanks to a chance viewing of The Mikado on Sky Arts. I saw opera star Yvonne Howard playing the role of Katisha and she blew me away. From there I was checking out her credits and finding myself gripped by classical opera in a way I never could have imagined.

My current favourite opera is Falstaff, I saw it at Garsington Opera very recently and it’s continued to resonate. I have a long-standing love affair with Gilbert & Sullivan operettas, they’ve been on my radar since I was a kid, however, Verdi’s Falstaff is something else. Comedy, poignancy and Italian language – it’s a treat for the eyes and the ears.

Favourite Play

Farce is my bag, when it comes to non-musical theatre I gravitate towards a laugh out loud comedy. Ray Cooney is one of my best-loved playwrights and recently I had the great pleasure of reviewing his production of Move Over Mrs Markham. It’s the king of farce and with the perfect cast, which the version I watched this year undoubtedly possessed – makes for a perfect night at the theatre for yours truly!

Favourite Film

I’m a Disney fan and a Harry Potter geek, so choosing a favourite film is nigh on impossible. All the Harry Potter films would be one answer, all the Disney films would be another answer.

If I move away from those particular passions and opportunities for geekery, I’d have to go with the hilarious American Pie movies. I can’t choose between them because the cast stays almost consistent throughout all four of the main films from the franchise. If there were major alterations to the line-up I think that would affect my judgement, however the proverbial dream team appear in them all (barring the lack of Chris Klein as Oz in the third film – which I might never get over!). I have met Thomas Ian Nicholas too, at a comic con – something else I may never get over. Truly.

An addition to my list of films which I can re-watch with alarming regularity is a surprise entry. I didn’t expect to love Harry & Meghan: A Royal Romance anywhere near as much as I did. The royal family are portrayed by a cast of exceptionally talented actors and I can’t recommend it highly enough. You can read my review here: Harry & Meghan: A Royal Romance Review

Favourite Television Programme

So tricky to narrow this one down so I’m going to pick one (or more!) from each genre. If we’re talking about Soap Operas then it has to be Coronation Street (closely followed by Hollyoaks). The Street is a continuing drama that never loses momentum and some of the old favourites still reside there.

ITV Home Fires

One of my all-time favourite television dramas was Home Fires on ITV. The fact that it didn’t get a third series was bewildering and it still has a place in my heart. Unforgotten recently trumped it for Sunday night TV but I also love Call The Midwife, I can’t wait for the Christmas special. These dramas all have excellent casts who gel and make the show thoroughly watchable.

No modern day sitcom comes close to the classics I grew up watching. Hi De Hi!, You Rang M’Lord, Keeping Up Appearances. There’s nothing there to beat them, the opportunity to watch them on Gold is a god-send. Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em is equally up there with the best comedies in my humble opinion. They are all on my must-watch list and half an hour of any of these shows can turn my frown upside down.

Favourite Actor

The name Stephen Beckett is one that immediately springs to mind, the admiration dates back to The Bill, Coronation Street and now last year’s Prospero in The Tempest at Stafford Castle and most definitely Mamma Mia at the Novello Theatre – Bill Austin is a part that was surely made for him. I didn’t know he could sing either so he’s most definitely an all-rounder de force.

I also need to add the incomparable Daniel Taylor to the mix, not only is he my favourite Sammy in my favourite musical, Blood Brothers – he’s also the best Tommy Cooper impersonator ever. He looks good in a dress, I can attest to that as I saw him as an Ugly Sister in Cinderella last year… just to clear that up! Seriously though, I don’t think there’s anything he can’t do.

As for screen actors, I hand the accolade to Seann William Scott, he is also better known as Stifler from the American Pie films and I think he’s got one of the most wonderful faces! Even when he’s voicing the role of Crash in Ice Age, I can picture him recording the voice of the character. I think his forte is comedy, although when he’s in a more dramatic role he still holds my attention – what an actor!

The actor I first admired when I was a telly addict child is Jeffrey Holland, Hi De Hi! was a must-watch in our house and I was smitten with Spike. Jeff is a chameleon when it comes to acting, there’s much more to him that meets the eye.

Favourite Actress

If we’re talking on stage then Sarah Jane Buckley without hesitation. In musical theatre she is exceptional, in pantomime she’s perfection and I first discovered her when she played the role of the unstable and, let’s face it, quite scary Kathy Barnes in Hollyoaks. I’ve always felt that the sky’s the limit for this super-talented lady. Sarah Jane is my best-loved actress on stage and on screen, without hesitation.

Through watching Harry & Meghan: A Royal Romance I discovered two actresses who were previously unknown to me and whom I now intend to keep my eyes peeled for in future. Deborah Ramsay portrayed Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall and Parisa Fitz-Henley played Meghan. I’m a royalist and their performances in particular resonated upon first viewing of what is now one of my favourite films and I am eager to see their faces on screen again soon.

A cheeky mention must go to the wonderful Judy Buxton too, she was one of my favourite actresses when I was growing up with watching some of the best sit coms on television and she is a power-house on stage, the epitome of versatility.

Favourite Singer

Too many to mention, however with my newly discovered love of opera the first names out of my mouth are those of Yvonne Howard and Marcus Farnsworth. The latter grabbed my attention and never let it go when he starred in the ENO production of Iolanthe at the Coliseum earlier this year. The former wowed me in The Mikado, Iolanthe and Falstaff, I’ve also heard her sing ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ in Carousel thanks to YouTube. Glorious!

I can’t finish the favourites post without a mention going to Ramin Karimloo, he was my first Phantom and he’ll always be my Phantom. Vocal ability that pushes boundaries, he’s a force of nature.

Photo Credits: Blood Brothers (Bill Kenwright Website), Falstaff (Clive Barda), Cast of Move Over Mrs Markham (Ray Cooney),  Stephen Beckett in The Tempest (Stafford Shakespeare Festival),  Sarah Jane Buckley as Mrs Lyons in Blood Brothers (with permission from Sarah Jane Buckley), Deborah Ramsay as Camilla in Harry & Meghan: A Royal Romance (Lifetime TV), ENO’s Iolanthe (Clive Barda), Ramin Karimloo (Sourced from Broadway World)

 

 

*** Feature Show *** ~ Aladdin

If I ask if you’ve seen Disney’s Aladdin – the vast majority of you will put your hand right up and might even give me a chorus of ‘Friend Like Me’ the popular big number sung by the incomparable late great Robin Williams who played the Genie. If you’re a theatre fan (or even if you’re not much of a theatre-goer) you’ll have to have been living in a cave not to have heard of the West End’s version of Disney’s Aladdin which has been wowing packed houses at Prince Edward Theatre.

My question is, have you seen it yet?

If the answer is no, would you like to find out some excellent reasons why you shouldn’t miss this spectacular West End show?

If the answer is yes, maybe the reasons I’ll hit you with will inspire you to go again…

  1. It’s Disney! ~ need I say more? Disney sprinkles its inimitable magic whether it be on screen or stage and to step inside the theatre and see this show is to absorb a whole new world of Disney magic (pardon the pun!).
  2. A famous Princess ~ maybe you’ve heard of Jade Ewen? She’s made a name for herself as a popular singer before joining the show and she makes for a perfect Princess Jasmine.
  3. Sing-along ~ unlike some musicals, this one boats so many well known songs that you can’t help but sing along.
  4. A glorious theatre ~ if this is your first time in the West End then you couldn’t pick a better theatre to start with than the Prince Edward Theatre. The atmosphere in the beautiful auditorium alone will astound you before curtain up!
  5. Watch the trailer and let that speak for itself! 

Are you convinced? Would you like to know a secret?

Thanks to the magic lamp, we have an offer you’ll LOVE! No booking fee for performances from 4 – 28 June 2018. Sound like a plan? Go for it: Aladdin Tickets

 

 

 

Photo Credits: Aladdin the Musical Website 

** This article features Affiliate Link with Encore Tickets **

Spotlight On… Star of The Addams Family Musical, Charlotte Page

The Addams Family musical has been on a UK tour which is wowing the nation and it’s still worming its way in and out of various theatres nationwide. You can check out all of the news and book tickets here: The Addams Family Tour

Charlotte Page is having a lot of fun playing the role of Alice Beineke and she very kindly took some time out to share all that the show has to offer, with Break A Leg.

Thank you so much for talking to Break A Leg, Charlotte – how are you enjoying the tour so far? 

This might sound predictable but I’m loving it! I’m with such a happy group of people and it’s a feel-good show, it’s a bit like heaven really.

Were you already familiar with the films? 

I watched the films and I’m also familiar with the old black and white TV series too.

How about this musical version, had you seen that done before?

No, I’d just seen little moments on YouTube as I thought I’d check it out to see what I was required to do. It looked like so much fun and the character has so many opportunities to change emotion. I’d not seen it as a live performance before though, not even an amateur version. I was pretty much unaware that the musical version even existed until the audition came along.

Now that the tour has been running for a while, have you found that you have a favourite moment in the show or a favourite song? 

My song ‘Waiting’ is of course a favourite, it’s such a tour de force of a number and it goes through so many different emotions. I also love what Carrie Hope Fletcher (who plays Wednesday) does with  the song ‘Pulled’ – she’s amazing. I also adore Cameron Blakely’s (Gomez) madness in general and Sam Womack (Morticia) is all velvet sexiness to watch. She floats through the evening.

What have the audience reactions been like so far? 

To be honest we’ve had the best audience reaction that I’ve ever known in comparison to the other shows that I’ve been in, other than Phantom in the West End. We’ve had standing ovations and if not standing ovations, certainly screaming, a massive reaction every night, it’s really fulfilling. It feels like you’re in something really special. I’m very lucky.

Have you had a favourite location or venue so far?

Gosh that’s really hard, I’m loving being in Bristol because it’s a beautiful city but in Dublin we had a completely different reaction to at any other venue. They were a more vocal crowd and you’d heard individuals shouting “ah go on give her a kiss!” – there was certainly ore audience participation. Every venue is different of course.

What led you into a performing career? 

I was pretty useless at everything else and I got into musical theatre after having been an Opera singer for a number of years. I was Christine in Phantom and went into musical theatre after that. From then on I’ve fallen more and more into the arms of musical theatre, I’ve been in A Little Light Music and Follies. This is my first big musical tour so it’s a learning curve for an old bird like me, it’s wonderful!

Finally, what would you say to encourage people to come and see the show?

It’ll make you happy and smile, everybody in your family can enjoy an evening at the theatre together. It’s really heart-warming, really silly. It plays to the level of a child and the level of an adult with a slightly naughty mind, it’s a very clever piece of musical theatre and a complete joy.

Thank you so much to Charlotte for an awesome interview, I am so looking forward to seeing the show. I’ll do the little dudududuh *click click* to finish on! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spotlight On… Star of Billy Elliot, Anna-Jane Casey

Billy Elliot is completing a tour which starts again on Tuesday 30 May in Milton Keynes – to book tickets, click here: Billy Elliot

Having recently stepped up to temporarily take over from Tamsin Outhwaite in Stepping Out, Anna-Jane Casey is playing the role of Mrs Wilkinson and she kindly gave an exclusive interview to Break A Leg…

Thanks for talking to Break A Leg, Anna-Jane – so you’re appearing as Mrs Wilkinson in Billy Elliot the musical…

Yes, it’s a part I’ve played before as I appeared as Mrs Wilkinson in the West End too. I’m playing her at Milton Keynes Theatre and then in Hamburg.

What do you particularly enjoy about the show, have you any favourite songs or moments?

I enjoy working with the different ‘Billys’ they all bring some different to the role and they’re all so talented.  My favourite moment is when Billy shows his letter from his mum to Mrs Wilkinson, it makes me cry, I’m a big softie and I cry at anything!

What do you think are the strengths of Mrs Wilkinson’s character?

On the face of it Mrs Wilkinson is dressed like a parrot for a start off, you know those kind of women they’re not posh or loaded but they like to spruce up when they go out. In those sad times of heartbreak and uncertainty this is a woman who must have walked into a room and looked like she had fairy lights on her – so it’s nice to be that loud a character. The story of Mrs Wilkinson is that she’s a failed dancer and she nearly got a job in the West End but didn’t quite get there so she went back to her home town and she’s got this school, now. She comes across as though she’s hard but every day she goes to that dance class and hopes that there’ll be one little spark of genius and she finds that in Billy. As brusque and as brash as you think she is on the surface she’s always thinking “please god let someone be good today” and that’s nice to play, the hard outside and the soft inside.

Do you find something different in the character every time you play her?

Oh definitely, while I’m away I facetime my two daughters and I was facetiming them last night as I was pulling on another lycra leotard and my blue spangled hot pants and my daughter said “oh my god mummy, what have you got on?”. In the eighties that’s what people used to wear, of course but it’s great to reveal that outfit every night and hear the audience go “sweet Jesus”. Also the kids are amazing around you, you get a real buzz from them.

You popped quickly into Stepping Out to play Mavis, how was that experience?

Tamsin’s (Outhwaite) a very old friend of mine, we did Grease together before she was a TV star so when she found out that she’d broken her foot, my sister Natalie was already in the show and I know the director very well so it was one of those moments where my sister had said “why don’t you ring AJ?” and Tamsin had said “ring AJ she’s the only one I know who could do it in a week!”. So I had a week’s rehearsal and it was brilliant working with my sister, we had a right laugh, but it was a flash in the pan because I was only going to be there for a month because I was due to start in Billy Elliot. It’s one of those moments that I’m going to look back on when we get to New Year’s Eve and think “bloody hell I managed to learn a show in a week!”. Amanda Holden is one of the nicest women on the planet and brilliant, she really is, I’d never worked with her before and she was heavenly.

Going back to 2015, you appeared in Mack and Mabel which I didn’t get to see but I read amazing reviews for…

I did the show previously, a good fifteen years ago I played Mabel, the main part. This time I played Lottie and the lovely Michael Ball was in the show. It was nice to do the show playing the secondary female lead, I couldn’t have played Mabel, people would have said “what’s that old woman doing?” and it was a very different production as when I played Mabel years ago it was an actor-muso show and we all had different instruments to play. I was given percussion which was hilarious, so I was clanging and banging at the back! So it was nice do the show and not have to have the responsibility of playing one of the title roles but also to perform that big number (Tap Your Troubles Away) which I’ve known for years and I performed at a prom with the John Wilson Orchestra a couple of years ago.

Finally, what would you say to encourage people to come and see Billy Elliot?

It’s still very politically true and it’s totally in our consciousness, we’re about to have a general election and the gap between what the Conservative party believe and what the Labour party believe at the time that the show was written it is the same. You had Margaret Thatcher on one side and Labour on the other who were fighting so hard for the Unions and we’re still fighting those battles today. I think the show has got real heart and it’s a show that will give you a brilliant story and the children are phenomenal. Any show where kids are swearing is hilarious, so come and see these brilliant kids saying the F word!

I’d like to thank Anna-Jane for a great interview, such a delight to chat to her (I’ve been a fan for years!) and wishing her and the rest of cast all the best for the rest of the Billy Elliot tour.

 

 

 

 

 

Spotlight On… Make It A Double Stars, Pippa Winslow and Tammy Davies

‘MAKE IT A DOUBLE’ 
a late night cabaret  fundraising in aid of Swansea Mind 
AT 
The Garage – Whitez Pool Lounge and Late Night Bar 47 Uplands Crescent, Swansea SA2 0NP Thursday 25th August 10:45pm   FEATURING  
TAMMY DAVIES and PIPPA WINSLOW 
While performing in the UK tour of THE SOUND OF MUSIC at the Swansea Grand Theatre, Tammy Davies and Pippa Winslow double up for a late night cabaret benefiting local charity Swansea Mind. With songs from WICKED, PHANTOM, CITY OF ANGELS and many more, this is an evening not to be missed.
Originally from Wales, Tammy’s varied career has taken her from rock to opera and everything in between. She has backed up artists including Elton John, Brian May and Kerry Ellis at venues such as Wembley Stadium and the Royal Albert Hall as well as toured the UK with the National Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company for eight years.
Originally from the US, Pippa has toured with THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA as well as created the role of the Thought Girl in the Off-Broadway musical OPAL. She has appeared in West End plays STRANGERS ON A TRAIN at the Gielgud and OTHER DESERT CITIES at the Old Vic as well as playing Carlotta in the UK premiere production of Yeston/Kopit’s PHANTOM. She also has appeared in many film and TV projects including the Sky1’s quirky comedy YOU, ME AND THE APOCALYPSE.
Tammy and Pippa met while touring with THE SOUND OF MUSIC and their love of cabaret performing has led them to teaming up for this evening of comedy and musical gems. Both have extensive solo cabaret experience, more than 15 years between them, in London and throughout the UK, and look forward bringing this brilliant variety of duets to their new show.
Pippa stated “It’s thrilling singing with someone who’s voice is such a perfect fit for mine. We’re pushing the envelope on some of our song selections and I know audiences are going to get a kick out of our choices.” “We hope it’s not entirely what you might expect from two musical theatre geeks,” Tammy added.
10% of profits will go to Swansea Mind and there will be additional opportunities to donate on the evening. Swansea Mind is a registered charity that works with, and for, people who experience mental health problems. As well as providing open drop-in
sessions for anyone in need of emotional support, they also run specialist support groups and speak to people on a one-to-one basis for more tailored support. All funds raised in aid of Swansea Mind helps makes this work possible and helps us keep their services accessible for people on no or low incomes. Registered charity in England and Wales (226732).
The Garage is part of Whitez Pool Lounge and Late Night Bar and is Swansea’s finest, most intimate live music venue. With great music ranging from local favourites to international superstars we take great pride in bringing you the finest live music Swansea has to offer, alongside some great drinks deals we truly do have something for everyone. Past acts include: Pete Doherty (the Libertines/Babyshambles), Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, Goldie Lookin’ Chain, Terry Hall (The Specials), Scratch Perverts and many, many more.

DSC_8916cropped (1)

I thought that this sounded like a winning formula, so I decided to catch up with these two lovely ladies to find out more about their new show.

Thank you so much for talking to Break A Leg, ladies, so tell me about the show and where the idea originated from.

We were in Blackpool with The Sound of Music at the Winter Gardens and we went out to watch a wonderful cabaret at the legendary ‘Funny Girls’ and thought how fun it would be to put one of our own together.

What can the audience expect from the production?

An evening of comedy and music, some songs very recognisable, some not, and stories about our lives as actresses.

Is this a style of show you’ve done before? For you, personally, how does it compare to being part of a show like The Sound of Music?

Pippa – I have done two different duet cabarets in the last year and a half, but both were with men. This is a chance to sing with a woman who makes me laugh every day at work and who’s voice blends perfectly with mine.

Tammy – I was just bored.

Is this a show that you hope to turn into a tour?

Absolutely. We already are looking for a venue in Guildford for the week our tour is in Wimbledon because that’s my home town and all my friends have asked to see it. After that, there are so many brilliant fringe festivals that this would be perfect for – Brighton, London, Edinburgh. Keep an eye on our Facebook page for news of future bookings.

Finally, what would you say to encourage people to come?

For a fun evening with a couple of semi-bonkers musical theatre geeks this can’t be beat.

I’m sold, I don’t know about you lot out there? All the details you need to book tickets are below and thanks to this wonderful duo for a great interview.

Ticket Booking Information Tickets can be booked for ‘Make it a Double’ at: Ticketsource Box Office online https://www.ticketsource.co.uk/event/EHGFKJ Or on the door
Performance Time and Ticket Prices: Thursday 25th August at 10:45pm Tickets £5 in advance or on the door

Make it a Double: Twitter: https://twitter.com/MakeItDoubleAct Facebook: http://www.Facebook.com/MakeItADoubleAct

Photo Credits: Kate Scott

 

Spotlight On… Musical Theatre Star, Jon Jon Briones

Olivier award nominated and What’s On Stage award winning Jon Jon Briones has played the role of the Engineer in Miss Saigon on numerous tours and until the beginning of this year, he played it again in London’s West End. He’s reprising the role yet again in 2017 on Broadway. I caught up with Jon Jon to find out what his favourite scene from his signature show, is and what led him to a performing career.

Thanks for talking to Break A Leg Review, so tell me about Miss Saigon and revisiting the role of the Engineer. What is your favourite scene from the show?

Not necessarily my favourite but the first 15 minutes of the show is very important and very hard to do because it sets up the whole show. It’s very intense, with so many characters to introduce and you have to show the ugliness of the situation and the ugliness of how people react to that situation. If that is done right then you set up the whole narrative of the show to the end.

What made you decide to become a performer?

I think I decided to become a performer when I realized I’m happiest when I’m on stage. I once wished I was on stage 24 hours a day and then I was cast in Miss Saigon in 1989 and doing 8 shows a week, that was the closest to that wish and I’ll take it.

What career do you think you’d be doing if you weren’t a performer?

I can’t be anything else but an actor.

Is there a favourite theatre you’ve performed in?

The Prince Edward Theatre would be up there with some of my favourites but I also love the intimate theatres. You’re not just talking top your scene partner but you also feel like you’re conversing with the audience.

Any particular roles you’d like to play in the future?

There’s a ton of roles I would love to play. Iago in Othello would be one of them.

jon jon
Jon Jon playing the role that he is famous for… The Engineer in Miss Saigon

 

 

Apart from Miss Saigon, what is your favourite musical and why?

The very first Musical I saw was West Side Story on TV when I was growing up in the Philippines and it changed my life. I thought life should always be expressed that way. When you’re happy, sad or angry, one should always be able to break into a song and dance. Now, wouldn’t that be a fabulous world!

If you could invite three famous people (alive or deceased) to a dinner party, who would they be and why?

Maya Angelou, Barack Obama and Lin Mauel Miranda. No explanations needed there because of the awesomeness and their heart.

For more information about Jon Jon, visit: http://www.brionestalent.com/jon_jon

Thanks to Jon Jon for sparing time out of his hectic schedule to chat to Break A Leg.

All Photos credited to: Brionestalent.com

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