2018 PRODUCTION - HAIRSPRAY
20 to 25 November 2018
Welcome to the 60s!
Our November 2018 production is the 60s extravaganza HAIRSPRAY.
Based on the original 1988 John Water's film, with music by Marc Shaiman and lyrics by Scott Wittman and Marc Shaiman, the smash hit stage version of HAIRSPRAY won 8 Tony awards, including Best Musical, and is a show piled bouffant-high with laughter, romance and deliriously tuneful songs.
It's 1962 in Baltimore and the lovable plus-sized teen Tracy Turnblad has only one desire, to dance on the popular Corny Collins Show on TV. When her dream comes true, Tracy is transformed from social outcast to sudden star. She must use her newfound power to dethrone the reigning Teen Queen, win the affections of heartthrob Link Larkin and integrate a TV network, all without denting her hairdo!
HAIRSPRAY is packed to the rafters with catchy musical numbers such as Good Morning Baltimore, The Nicest Kids in Town, Mama I'm a Big Girl Now, Big, Blonde & Beautiful, Without Love, (It's) Hairspray, I Know Where I've Been, You Can't Stop the Beat and many more.
Come along and enjoy this feel-good musical - it's guaranteed to have you up on your feet. Unlock that secret dancer and join the cast in a night of laughter and fun!
HAIRSPRAY will be a first for St. Augustine's MTC and also a première for The Core Theatre, Solihull. Remember - "You Can't Stop the Beat!"
Click the link below to watch the trailer for the film version of Hairspray and read a synopsis of the show.
We are delighted to announce that NAOMI O’BORNE has been cast as TRACY TURNBLAD for our 2018 production of Hairspray.
Naomi studied Musical Theatre in London and, as well as performing, she also works as a music and singing teacher in the local area. We warmly welcome her to her first role with St. Augustine’s MTC. Naomi takes on the central role of Tracy Turnblad, the larger-than-life young lady with a big heart and even bigger hair!
MICHAEL BENTLEY has been cast in the role of EDNA TURNBLAD for our 2018 production of Hairspray. We are thrilled that Michael is returning to the company to become Tracy’s loving, plus-sized mother!
Michael is a very experienced performer and has appeared in numerous productions with many companies. He is no stranger to St. Augustine’s MTC having appeared as George in The Wedding Singer, Joe Cable in South Pacific and The Sheriff of Nottingham in Robin, Prince of Sherwood, as well as being a past Chairman.
Many will also know Michael from his successful weekly Musical Theatre show on Balsall Radio.
JAKE BLUE REEVE-YATES will be joining the company to play the role of LINK LARKIN for our 2018 production of Hairspray. This is Jake’s first production with St. Augustine’s MTC, and we warmly welcome him to the company.
Link Larkin is the star heart-throb of the TV show in Hairspray - someone with a sparkle in his eye, and is Tracy’s dream guy. We’re sure that Jake fits the role perfectly!
We are very pleased to announce that EMILY WHITE is returning to the company to play the role of AMBER VON TUSSLE for our 2018 production of Hairspray.
Emily has previously appeared with St. Augustine’s MTC in Disco Inferno in 2009 and The Wedding Singer in 2010. After travelling the world extensively, Emily is now back and ready to take on the role of self-centred and snobby Amber, who will go to any lengths to continue to hold the title of ‘Miss Baltimore Hairspray’. Welcome back Emily!
We are very pleased to announce that LOUIS SIMMONDS has been cast as SEAWEED J. STUBBS for our 2018 production of Hairspray.
Louis has been performing since the age of 8 and has appeared in over 25 full-scale productions, including playing the lead role of Tyrone Jackson in Fame, and in April he will be playing Mr. Cortina in Made in Dagenham at The Core Theatre. Louis also has experience in directing drama workshops.
In joining a St. Augustine’s MTC production for the first time, Louis will be taking the role of Seaweed J. Stubbs, a cocky but surprisingly lovable guy who falls for Penny Pingleton, and together they are determined to defy the segregation laws of the 1960s. Welcome to the company Louis!
We are really pleased to announce that BRYONY HARRISON has been cast as PENNY PINGLETON for our 2018 production of Hairspray.
Bryony trained at Stratford-upon-Avon college and now works as a singing teacher at Theatretrain in Bromsgrove. This will be Bryony’s first production with St. Augustine’s MTC and she joins to take on the role of Penny Pingleton, Tracy’s slightly dorky, but loveable best friend and side-kick. Penny falls for Seaweed J. Stubbs, and together they work to break the barriers of segregation.
We warmly welcome Bryony to the company!
We are delighted to announce that RACHEL PATTINSON has been cast as VELMA VON TUSSLE for our 2018 production of Hairspray.
Rachel has performed in many roles with St. Augustine’s MTC, including Sally Bowles in Cabaret, Maria in The Sound of Music, Anita in West Side Story, Mother Superior in Sister Act, and most recently as Golde in last year’s production of Fiddler on the Roof. Rachel takes on a very different role as the scheming TV producer Velma - a real villainess!
Following auditions, we are very pleased to announce that ELISHA BEECH will play the role of MOTORMOUTH MAYBELLE in our 2018 production of Hairspray.
Elisha is a very talented vocalist, and is manager of her own performing arts singing school in Birmingham. Motormouth Maybelle is a sassy and confident record store owner and DJ, and is a fantastic role for Elisha to bring to life on stage. This is Elisha’s first role with St. Augustine’s MTC and we are really happy to welcome her to the company.
We are thrilled to announce that MARK HUGHES has been cast as WILBUR TURNBLAD for our 2018 production of Hairspray.
Mark first appeared with St. Augustine’s MTC back in 1994 in Barnum and since then has performed in many other productions with the company, including My Fair Lady, Noises Off, A La Carte, Captain Tempest in Return to the Forbidden Planet, Bill Sykes in Oliver!, René Artois in 'Allo 'Allo, Captain von Trapp in The Sound of Music, The Baker in Into the Woods, Dave Bukatinsky in The Full Monty, The Lion in The Wizard of Oz and most recently Franklin Hart Jr. in the 2016 production of 9 to 5.
Mark returns to play the fantastic comic role of Wilbur Turnblad, Tracy’s simple-minded and kind-hearted father, and husband to Edna. He runs the Har-De-Har joke shop and supports his wife and daughter to follow their dreams. Welcome back Mark!
JAMES GOUGH has been cast as the charismatic TV show host CORNY COLLINS for our 2018 production of Hairspray.
James has worked with other theatre companies in the area in such shows as The Addams Family, where he played the role of Lurch, Pilate in Jesus Chris Superstar, and he will be appearing as Sir Lancelot in Spamalot at The Core Theatre in April. James then steps into the shoes of CORNY COLLINS in his first role with St. Augustine’s MTC - a Baltimore TV celebrity not afraid to be in the spotlight, and a real charmer!
We are delighted to announce that LIANE HUGHES has been cast as PRUDY PINGLETON for our 2018 production of Hairspray.
Liane is St. Augustine’s MTC’s resident choreographer, having worked on numerous productions including The Full Monty, Little Shop of Horrors, Red Hot & Cole, The Wedding Singer, South Pacific, West Side Story, Kiss Me, Kate, Stepping Out, Sister Act, 9 to 5 and Fiddler on the Roof.
Liane has also performed on stage with the company on many occasions, beginning with Seven Brides for Seven Brothers back in 1985. Other performing credits include Mavis in Stepping Out, Lucinda in Into the Woods, Baroness Schraeder in The Sound of Music, and Margaret in 9 to 5.
As well as being choreographer for Hairspray, Liane will be playing the comic role of Prudy Pingleton, Penny’s strict, controlling mother who can’t help but be over-protective!
It's Baltimore in 1962 and Tracy Turnblad goes to school and is given a warning for "inappropriate hair height". After school, Tracy rushes home with her best friend, Penny, to catch the local teenage dance show, The Corny Collins Show (The Nicest Kids in Town). Edna, Tracy’s shy and overweight mother, is ironing and complains about the noise of the music coming from the television, while Penny’s mother, Prudy, complains about it being race music. After an announcement that auditions for a place on the show will be held due to the fact that Brenda (one of the Corny Collins Council Members) has taken a leave of absence from the show for '9 months', Tracy begs her mother for permission to audition. Edna, fearing that Tracy will be laughed at due to her weight, refuses. Penny and Amber (the main dancer on The Corny Collins Show) have similar arguments with their mothers (Mama, I’m a Big Girl Now).
After gaining permission and support from her father, Wilbur, Tracy auditions for the show and bumps into teenage heartthrob, Link Larkin, which leads into a dream sequence (I Can Hear the Bells). Velma Von Tussle, the racist producer of The Corny Collins Show, rejects Tracy from the audition because of her size (The Legend of Miss Baltimore Crabs), as well as refusing a black girl, Little Inez. Back at school, Tracy is sent to detention for her "monumental hair-don't". There she meets black dancer Seaweed J. Stubbs (the son of the hostess of 'Negro Day' on The Corny Collins Show, Motormouth Maybelle), who teaches her several dance moves. She uses the new dance steps at the Sophomore Hop the following day to introduce herself to Corny Collins (The Madison). When Corny sees how well Tracy can dance, he gives her a place on the show (The Nicest Kids in Town (Reprise)). During the broadcast, Link, following Corny’s suggestion, sings It Takes Two to Tracy, much to Amber’s dismay. After the show, Mr. Spritzer, the show’s worrisome sponsor, appeals to Velma over Tracy’s appointment to the Council. Velma, threatening to fire Corny from the show, is eventually left distraught and determines to ruin Tracy (Velma’s Revenge).
At the Turnblad house, Edna is receiving calls from fans who saw Tracy on the show. A call comes in from Mr. Pinky, the owner of a plus-size dress shop, for an endorsement. Tracy pleads with her mother to come with her and to act as her agent although Edna has not left their apartment in years. Finally making it outside, Edna is given a huge makeover (Welcome to the 60's) and Tracy becomes the spokes-girl for the shop. At school, signs of Tracy’s fame are evident in the schoolyard, with graffiti on the walls and Shelly, another Council Member sporting Tracy’s signature hairdo. During a game of dodge ball, a jealous Amber knocks Tracy out, and Link rushes to her side. Penny and Seaweed, who have developed a liking for each other, rush to fetch the school nurse, only to find her out sick. Seaweed, suggesting that some fun would make Tracy feel better, invites all of them to his mother’s record shop for a platter party (Run and Tell That). At the shop, Tracy rallies everyone to march against the station on the following day’s Mother-Daughter Day, as blacks are not allowed on the show except for the monthly Negro Day. Before they start, Motormouth Maybelle convinces the initially reluctant Edna and Wilbur to march as well. Link declined to participate for the sake of his contract with the show. During the protest, led by Motormouth, Velma calls the police and fights break out. When the police arrive on the scene, almost everyone is arrested (Big, Blonde and Beautiful).
After the march, most of the women are locked up in a women's penitentiary (The Big Dollhouse). Because of Velma’s dirty tactics, the governor pardons and releases both her and Amber. Wilbur bails out the remaining people, excluding Tracy who is forced to remain in jail through another one of Velma’s manipulations. Tracy is alone and wishes that Link could be with her (Good Morning Baltimore (Reprise)). Back at the Har-De-Har Hut (Wilbur's joke shop), Wilbur and Edna are left destitute because of the money it cost them to bail everyone out and with Tracy still in prison. Edna sympathizes with her daughter’s dream – she had dreamt of making her “own line of queen-sized dress patterns”. Edna and Wilbur reminisce about their past and how they can never be parted from each other (You’re Timeless to Me). During the night, Link sneaks into the jail where he finds Tracy in solitary confinement. As Link and Tracy reunite, Penny’s mother, Prudy, punishes Penny for “going to jail without her permission” and ties her up in her bedroom where Seaweed comes to her rescue. Both couples declare their love for one another (Without Love). After escaping from their respective prisons, the couples seek refuge at Motormouth Maybelle’s Record Shop. Tracy thinks that it is unfair that after all of their hard work, The Corny Collins Show is still segregated. They devise a plan to help integrate the show, and Motormouth remembers their long fight for equality (I Know Where I've Been).
On the day of the Miss Teenage Hairspray competition, Corny Collins starts the show with a song ((It’s) Hairspray). Amber shows off her talents in a bid to get more votes from the viewers (Cooties). Just as the results are about to be announced, Tracy stuns Amber as she makes her entrance in a magenta dress without any petticoat underneath, taking over the stage, and is joined by Link, Penny, Seaweed, Edna, Wilbur, Little Inez, and Motormouth. Tracy is declared the winner of the competition. Amber and Velma protest the results, claiming that it is all wrong. Little Inez then tries to take the crown by force when Amber refuses to hand it over, but Tracy stops her, claiming that her heart is set on something more important, which is Link and her future. She then proclaims the Corny Collins show is "now and forevermore" racially integrated, to much applause. When all is announced, Mr. Spritzer runs onstage thrilled with the public’s response to the telecast and announces that the governor has pardoned Tracy and gave her a full college scholarship and he offers Link a recording contract and Velma the position of vice president of Ultra Glow – beauty products for women of colour, much to the latter's chagrin. Prudy arrives at the station and, seeing how happy Penny is with Seaweed, accepts her daughter for who she is. At the height of the moment, the company invites Amber and Velma to join the celebration. With the station in joyous celebration, Tracy and Link cement their love with a kiss (You Can't Stop the Beat).
Rehearsals take place on WEDNESDAY and THURSDAY evenings at 7.30pm at Widney Junior School. Please note that if you have a role in this production, other than unavoidable work commitments, illness and holidays, you are expected as a priority to make yourself available on Wednesday and Thursday evenings for rehearsals.
If you cannot attend a rehearsal, contact Veronica Walsh on 0121 705 3914 initially and thereafter Stephen Powell or Liane Hughes (phone numbers are on your rehearsal schedule). Please contact the production team directly and preferably in advance of a rehearsal, so that any disruption to a planned rehearsal can be avoided. Do not send absence messages via another cast member or other third party!
There will also be two orchestra rehearsals - Sunday 11 November from 10.00am to 1.00pm and Sunday 18 November from 2.00pm to 5.00pm. Venues to be confirmed.