Posts tagged West End Production
West End cast members of WICKED are auctioning customized tote bags and other items in celebration of Wicked Day 2012, which took place on October 31. Proceeds will go to the charities WOODLAND Trust, a tree conservation society, and Magic Cash for Kids, a charity for London children in need.
The items are being sold on Ebay. Items come from cast members including: Gemma Atkins (ensemble, u/s Nessarose; former u/s Elphaba), Keith Bartlett (The Wizard), Gina Beck (Glinda), Oliver Brenin (swing, u/s Dr. Dillamond, Witch’s Father), Sophie Carmen-Jones (former ensemble), Nicholas Collier (former swing, u/s Chistery, Witch’s Father), Nikki Davis-Jones (former s/b Elphaba), Enobong Essien (former ensemble), Lillie Flynn (former Nessarose), Harry Francis (former ensemble, u/s Boq), Christopher Howell (Dr. Dillamond, u/s Wizard; former temporary Wizard), Jacqueline Hughes (swing, u/s Madame Morrible, Midwife), Robert Jones (ensemble), Julie Legrand (former Madame Morrible), Sophie Linder-Lee (swing, u/s Glinda, Witch’s Mother, Midwife), Michelle Pentecost (ensemble, u/s Elphaba), Adam Pettigrew (former Boq), Chloe Taylor (former s/b Glinda; former swing, u/s Glinda), Lindsay Taylor (Witch’s Mother, ensemble), and Oliver Watton (ensemble, u/s Fiyero).
For more information about Wicked Day visit www.wickedthemusical.co.uk/wickedday/.
Louise Dearman has replaced Rachel Tucker as Elphaba.
Ben Freeman has replaced Matt Willis as Fiyero.
Katie Rowley Jones has replaced Lillie Flynn as Nessarose and is also an understudy for Elphaba.
Sam Lupton has replaced Adam Pettigrew as Boq.
Louise Plowright has replaced Julie Legrand as Madame Morrible.
Hayley Gallivan has replaced Nikki Davis-Jones as the standby for Elphaba.
Lucy van Gasse has replaced Chloe Taylor as the standby for Glinda.
Paulo Teixeira is now an understudy for Boq, in addition to performing in the ensemble and playing Chistery.
Stuart Ramsey has replaced Kieran Brown in the ensemble, as the Witch’s Father, and as an understudy for The Wizard and Dr. Dillamond.
Lindsay Taylor and Emma Green have joined the ensemble and will be alternating as the Witch’s Mother, replacing Bonnie Parker.
Ashley Andrews, Alex Louize Bird, Andrew Bryant, Sophie Carmen-Jones, Enobong Essien, Harry Francis, David Rudin, Charlotte Scott, Sam Taylor, Nicholas Collier, Soeli Parry, and Gary Wood have left the company.
Florence Andrews has joined company in the ensemble and as an understudy for Glinda and Nessarose.
Jason Winter has joined the company in the ensemble and as an understudy for Fiyero.
Marc McBride has joined the company in the ensemble and as an understudy for Boq.
William Bozier, Phillip Catchpole, Aisling Duffy, Stacey McGuire, and Tom Muggeridge have joined the company in the ensemble.
Lauren Brooke and Justin Thomas have joined the company as swings.
Gemma Atkins is no longer an understudy for Elphaba. Ms. Atkins still covers the role of Nessarose.
Check out this video where Louise Dearman (Elphaba – West End; former Glinda – West End) and Gina Beck (Glinda – West End) are introduced in costume. You can also catch glimpses of Keith Bartlett (The Wizard), Louise Plowright (Madame Morrible) and Ben Freeman (Fiyero) in costume. The video was posted by YouTube user wickedthemusicaluk.
Louise Dearman (former Glinda – West End) will rejoin the West End production on October 29, 2012 in the role of Elphaba. Ms. Dearman will become the first actress to play both leading roles in any production of WICKED.
Dioni Michelle Collins has replaced Betsy Werbel in the ensemble and as an understudy for Madame Morrible.
Adinah Alexander has joined the company as a swing.
Brandon Leffler has replaced Nathan Peck in the ensemble.
West End Production
Keith Bartlett has replaced Christopher Howell as The Wizard.
Christopher Howell has returned to the role of Dr. Dillamond.
Check out this video of Jennifer Tierney (former ensemble, u/s Elphaba, u/s Madame Morrible – West End) performing “Defying Gravity” at Central Station Bar last month. The video is credited to YouTube user Campmotha and is embedded below for your convenience.
Check out these videos of West End cast members performing at the Covent Garden Piazza on April 15, 2012 before the Olivier Awards!
The videos are from YouTube user Campmotha and have been embedded below.
Rachel Tucker (Elphaba) performing “The Wizard and I”
Rachel Tucker and Matt Willis (Fiyero) performing “As Long As You’re Mine”
Rachel Tucker and Gina Beck (Glinda) performing “For Good”
Updates are for the last couple of weeks:
Kristina Fernandez has replaced Maia Evwaraye-Griffin in the ensemble.
Bud Weber has replaced Constantine Rousouli in the ensemble.
Libby Servais has left the Broadway Company.
Tania Mathurin has replaced Aileen Donohoe as the Midwife and an understudy for Madame Morrible.
1st National Tour
Sarah Schenkkan has replaced Alli McGinnis in the ensemble and as an understudy for Glinda.
2nd National Tour
Paul Kreppel replaced Don Amendolia as The Wizard, on March 7, 2012.
Today, we have an exclusive interview with Nadine Cox. Ms. Cox performed in the West End company of “Wicked”, where she was an original cast member and understudy for Madame Morrible. She will be performing from November 15 – December 5, 2011 at the Union Theatre as Maxine in “Stepping Out”. Tickets are available by clicking here. (will insert link to www.ticketsource.co.uk.) Check out her interview below!
What was your first professional acting job, and how did you get it? What did you learn from the experience?
My first pro job was pantomime when I was three! I can’t really remember it!
How did you come to audition for “Wicked”? How long was the audition process, and what did you have to do?
I was on tour as Mrs. Bixby with “Seven Brides For Seven Brothers” when my agent at the time said that I had an audition for “Wicked”. I didn’t even think I’d get an audition so I was thrilled. If I remember rightly the audition process was over about five weeks in total but it was a while ago! The first round was singing, then I got recalled with Morrible material and music from the show, then a dance call, then a script and music call with the American creatives and I think there was another dance call somewhere in there but the final call was musical and script work.
What was your reaction when you found out you had been cast in “Wicked”?
I was on my way to Bristol on the tour and got a phone call from my agent saying I had been offered the job and I screamed, then I rang my mum to tell her. She was ecstatic for me. I knew what a big deal the show was going to be and already was in America and I felt so lucky and proud that I was going to be in the original London cast! I was a little shellshocked as I had a moment where I just kept saying to myself I’m going to be in “Wicked”, I’m going to be in “Wicked”. I was so excited at the thought of it that I spent the rest of the day and the week and probably up to rehearsals and opening night in a bit of a daze. Opening night was unbelievable and i remember being overwhelmed on hearing the audience roar when the curtain went up.
How long was your initial rehearsal process for the show? What was it like?
The rehearsal process was five weeks I think. It was everything from nerve wracking to exciting, exhilarating, scary, fantastic, funny. Aside from the intense schedule which is required in any show, particularly with a show on the scale of “Wicked” and the extreme hard work from everyone, we all had so much fun. There were a lot of laughs.
What was the hardest part of your rehearsal process for the ensemble? What about for Madame Morrible?
“I have to be honest and say there was nothing difficult about rehearsing for my ensemble role as Shenshen. It was so much fun and wonderful to have the chance to create something from scratch. The director Joe Mantello gave me a beautifully eloquent and perfect description of what he was looking for, a really strong guideline, and then said I could do what I wanted within that and he would tell me if something worked or didn’t etc. and that’s how it went. It was amazing knowing that I could be spontaneous and brave with my choices and that I could be free in those choices. Choreographically, the rehearsal process with Wayne Cilento was awesome as were the musical rehearsals with Stephen Oremus. Truly inspiring and exciting. I would get real rush every day knowing that I was going to rehearsals. Reharsing for the ensemble was just brilliant. The one thing I remember that’s quite funny is that there were loads of us who just couldn’t say “the witch of the west is dead” in the opening. It kept coming out “the wikcedy witch is west” It was so funny and thank god I had that line under my belt by opening night! I suppose the difficult thing about understudying any role is that you honestly could get put on at any point…..that could mean anything from a few weeks’ notice when you know someone is going on holiday to a phone call on the day or not long before the show starts. It’s the never knowing that is both hard but also fun as it keeps you on your toes and gives you another focus outside the ensemble track you have.
What was your favorite part of the show to perform in the ensemble? What about as Madame Morrible?
Favourite part as Morrible is the “Citizens of Oz, there is an enemy who must be found and captured ” etc and the section on the stairs when she grabs Galinda and tells her to smile and wave and shut up. Morrible is so vile and was so much fun to play. There are so many ensemble parts I loved. It’s very difficult to pick out but I always enjoyed the scenes in the classroom when me, Pfannee and Galinda would annoy Elphaba!
How long does it take to get into the extensive make-up and costume required for Madame Morrible?
After doing it for a long time, the Morrible makeup and costume took just over twenty-five minutes. When I first started doing the makeup it took me forever and I’m good with stage makeup! It’s a very specific look. I loved becoming Morrible. The costumes were incredible as were my ensemble costumes.
How did you keep your voice in good shape while performing such a vocally demanding role each night?
Keeping vocally healthy is incredibly important. The ensemble vocal demands are high in “Wicked”. Every single person on that stage plays a vital role in how the show sounds and you can tell if there is a harmony missing or isn’t as strong as it should be. You have a responsibility to be as healthy as you can be outside the obvious obstacles of getting unwell as everyone does. Singing eight shows a week is extremely demanding and can be very tiring on the voice. When I was in “Wicked” I would generally go home most nights straight after the show. I don’t drink or smoke so all of that helps with vocal hygiene and I don’t tend to go out very much where I have talk at a level that is too much above my natural speaking level. That sounds very drastic but when I’m working that’s what I do. Plenty of sleep is a must must must.
What was it like to leave “Wicked” after being in the show so long?
Oh my goodness, leaving “Wicked” was very upsetting but it was the right decision after three years commitment to the most brilliant show. I had had the most fantastic time there and I was very sad to go but I needed to move on and I was very lucky to go into “Billy Elliot” a few months later. I finished that in November last year and then did pantomime in Brighton at Christmas. I start rehearsals shortly for the original play version of “Stepping Out” in which I’ll be playing Maxine at The Union Theatre. I can’t wait!
What advice would you give to aspiring performers?
Advice to any aspiring performers? I get asked this a lot. There’s so much I could say. I don’t know where to begin. I love what I do and couldn’t think of anything else I would want to do to. Performing is the most amazing thing to be able to do. I love love love my job. If you love acting, singing, dancing and can’t think about anything else and are passionate about always learning and improving then be what you want to be. Despite the fact that it can be an incredibly tough business with many many disappointments, it also has wonderful moments and if you are realistic about your casting bracket and can accept both positive and negative feedback, if you love what you do then go for it.
Congratulations to Gina Beck and Matt Willis who will be taking over as Glinda and Fiyero respectively in the London production of Wicked! Gina has been seen recently on the West End as Christine in The Phantom of the Opera, as well as Cosette in Les Miserables, whilst Matt is best known from his time in the boyband Busted. His stage experience includes Chuck in the UK tour of Footloose and Nick Hurley in the West End production of Flashdance.
Lillie Flynn will also be joining as Nessarose after performing in Love Story earlier this year, with Adam Pettigrew, who was recently seen in the UK tour of Avenue Q as Princeton/Rod, joining as Boq. Christopher Howell (West End credits include understudy Edna in Hairspray, Rex in Too Close To The Sun, My Fair Lady, The Witches of Eastwick, and Fame) will take over as Doctor Dillamond, and Desmond Barrit (former Wizard – West End) returns as The Wizard after formerly playing the role in the 2008-2009 West End cast.
The new cast will have their first performance on December 12th, 2011. Louise Dearman (Glinda – West End), Mark Evans (current Fiyero, former u/s Fiyero – West End), Zoe Rainey (Nessarose – West End), Ben Stott (Boq – West End), Julian Forsyth (Doctor Dillamond, u/s The Wizard – West End), and Clive Carter (The Wizard – West End), as well as a number of ensemble members, will have their final performance on December 10th, 2011.