Just a few highlights of shows coming to Wales’ premiere event space
NEW SHOW – MOTOWN THE MUSICAL IS COMING TO WALES MILLENNIUM CENTRE
With music and lyrics from the Motown catalogue and book by Motown founder Berry Gordy, Charles Randolph-Wright’s production features a live orchestra playing 50 Motown tracks including Ain’t No Mountain High Enough, I’ll Be There, Dancing In The Street, Stop! In The Name Of Love, My Girl and I Heard It through the Grapevine and tells the story behind the classic hits.
Motown the Musical uncovers the true story of the legendary record label that changed music history and created the soundtrack of a generation.
Berry Gordy said: “The UK has always been the gateway for Motown to the rest of the world. While the west end production still continues to perform to great audiences, I’m thrilled that we are taking a second production of Motown the Musical to the rest of the UK.”
Motown the Musical is at Wales Millennium Centre 26 March – 6 April 2019
CASTING NEWS FOR TITANIC THE MUSICAL
Casting has been confirmed for the first ever UK & Ireland Tour of Titanic The Musical. Directed by returning director Thom Southerland, 25 actors from across the country will take the production on its maiden UK and Ireland tour, to visit the cities and communities whose forebears built, manned and sailed on the famous ship.
Based on real people aboard the most legendary ship in the world, Maury Yeston and Peter Stone’s stunning musical focuses on their hopes and aspirations. Unaware of the fate that awaits them, the Third Class immigrants dream of a better life in America, the newly-enfranchised Second Class dream of achieving the lifestyles of the rich and famous, and the millionaire Barons of the First Class dream of their mastery lasting forever.
The cast will feature eleven actors returning from Titanic The Musical’s performances at the Princess of Wales Theatre in Toronto, Southwark Playhouse and Charing Cross Theatre. The cast includes Alistair Barron, Kieran Brown, Greg Castiglioni, Lewis Cornay, Alexander Evans, Simon Green, Emma Harrold, Devon-Elise Johnson, Claire Machin, Claire Marlowe Oliver Marshall, Matthew McDonald, Chris McGuigan, Matthew McKenna, Gemma McMeel, Janet Mooney, Joel Parnis, Timothy Quinlan, Philip Rham, Dudley Rogers, Victoria Serra, Niall Sheehy, Judith Street and Stephen Webb & Samuel J Weir.
Titanic The Musical will be in Wales Millennium Centre 30 April – 5 May 2018
FULL CAST ANNOUNCED FOR STING’S DEBUT MUSICAL – THE LAST SHIP
The full cast and creative team has been announced for The Last Ship – the acclaimed musical by internationally renowned musician Sting – which comes to The Centre in May.
The Last Ship, which was initially inspired by Sting’s 1991 album The Soul Cages and his own childhood experiences, tells the story of a community amid the demise of the ship building industry in Tyne and Wear, with the closure of the Swan Hunter shipyard. It features some of his best-loved songs; Island of Souls, All This Time & When We Dance.
The casting of Joe McGann (Jackie White), Charlie Hardwick (Peggy White), Richard Fleeshman (Gideon Fletcher) and Frances McNamee (Meg Dawson) was announced earlier this month.
Joe McGann, perhaps best known for his lead role as Charlie Burrows in the comedy series The Upper Hand, has had a wide career spanning theatre, television and film. Theatre credits include Elf, The Rise and Fall of Little Voice, Calendar Girls, Olivier! , Fiddler on the Roof and Guys and Dolls.
Charlie Hardwick played Val Pollard from 2004 to 2015 and again in 2017 in the ITV soap opera Emmerdale. For this role, she won the 2006 British Soap Award for Best Comedy Performance. Stage credits include Hyem and Double Lives.
Richard Fleeshman is a familiar face on our stage and screens having been acting since the age of 12 when he played the role of Craig Harris in Coronation Street for four years. A talented singer-songwriter, Richard’s stage roles include Sam Wheat in Ghost the Musical, a part he originated and played in the West End on Broadway.
Frances McNamee is currently appearing alongside Kelsey Grammer in Big Fish. Her film credits include Love in Fifteen Minutes.
Jimmy Nail, who was to take the role of Jackie White, is no longer performing in The Last Ship. He said: “I was very much looking forward to appearing in Sting’s ‘The Last Ship’, particularly here in my home city. Sadly that’s not to be. I would like to thank the production in allowing FACT, the charity of which I’m a patron, to benefit from the planned gala charity event. To anyone who has purchased a ticket, please, go see the show and give this vessel the launch it so deserves. You’ll hear some of the finest musical works ever composed for the stage.”
The Last Ship will be in Wales Millennium Centre 14 – 19 May 2018
FULL CAST ANNOUNCEMENT FOR FAT FRIENDS – THE MUSICAL
Fat Friends, the award winning TV drama has been adapted for the stage by its creator and one of the UK’s most prolific writers, Kay Mellor, whose extensive television credits include hit series of Band of Gold, The Chase, The Syndicate, In the Club and whose stage credits include A Passionate Woman.
Joining the previously announced cast, Natasha Hamilton (Atomic Kitten) will take on the role of Julia, Kevin Kennedy (Coronation Street) stars as Fergus and Rachael Wooding (We Will Rock You) appears as Joanne, alongside Jonathan Halliwell (Let It Shine) as Paul and Chloe Hart (Hairspray) as Val. Alan will be played by Neil Hurst, one of dozens of Yorkshiremen who applied for the role through an open audition call.
What’s On Stage Award nominee Joel Montague, who recently starred alongside Sheridan Smith in Funny Girl, will share the role of Kevin with Andrew ‘Freddie’ Flintoff.
Kevin Kennedy who plays the role of Fergus said of the show, “I think audiences will have a great time out. It’s a feel-good show which deals with some important stuff at the same time as being light hearted and fun.”
Fat Friends -The Musical is at Wales Millennium Centre 24 – 28 Apr 2018
CASTING UPDATE NEWS- AMELIA LILY JOINS CAST OF SHREK THE MUSICAL
Shrek The Musical has announced full casting for the major nationwide tour, with Amelia Lily joining the cast as ‘Princess Fiona’ from April 2018.
As previously announced, Call the Midwife star Laura Main will also play ‘Princess Fiona’ at The Centre during the first week of the run, sharing the role with Amelia, who will play the role during the second week, while Laura continues filming on the current BBC series. They will play opposite Steffan Harri who will lead the cast as beloved swamp-dwelling ogre ‘Shrek’ with Marcus Ayton as Shrek’s wisecracking sidekick ‘Donkey’ and Samuel Holmes as pint-sized villain ‘Lord Farquaad’.
Amelia Lily first rose to fame on The X Factor, finishing third on the eighth series in 2011. Her debut single ‘You Bring Me Joy’ reached number two on the UK Singles Chart. Theatre credits include playing the Narrator in Joseph and his Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (UK Tour), Whatsername in the West End premiere of Green Day‘s hit punk rock musical American Idiot (Arts Theatre & UK Tour) and Shout! (Winter Gardens Blackpool). Most recently Amelia was runner up in the 2017 edition of Celebrity Big Brother.
Shrek The Musical is at Wales Millennium Centre 10 Apr – 22 Apr 2018
SIR PETER WRIGHT’S DAZZLING PRODUCTION OF THE SLEEPING BEAUTY COMES TO THE CENTRE
The Sleeping Beauty is one of the grandest ballets ever created, with a classical score by Tchaikovsky and original choreography by Marius Petipa. The opulent world of Imperial Russian ballet, with its marvelous mixture of virtuoso dance, fairy tale characters and dazzling spectacle, has delighted audiences for over a hundred years.
Sir Peter Wright’s 1984 production for Birmingham Royal Ballet, with designs by Philip Prowse, is acclaimed as one of the best in the world.
The Sleeping Beauty is at Wales Millennium Centre 14– 17 March 2018
LET IT BE RETURNS TO CELEBRATE THE MUSIC OF THE BEATLES
Let It Be: A Celebration Of The Music Of The Beatles has firmly established itself as a successful West End and international touring show. Now the smash-hit stage show has been updated and is back on tour, featuring a brand new Let It Be Part II – which has never been seen before in the UK.
The show is a celebration of the phenomenal music of The Beatles, and has already been seen by more than two million people worldwide, including an acclaimed run in the West End and two UK tours.
Let It Be is the ultimate experience for Beatles fans, and features many of the Fab Four’s best loved songs including A Hard Days Night, Day Tripper, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, Twist and Shout, I Want To Hold Your Hand and Strawberry Fields Forever.
Beatles fans are invited to join John, Paul, George and Ringo for a great night of live music. Enjoy the early beginnings at the word famous Cavern Club, through to the height of Beatlemania. In a twist from the original Let It Be show, audiences will then be taken on a Magical Mystery Tour to experience the concert that never was.
Part II of Let It Be is the brand new part of the show, giving audiences the rare opportunity to see The Beatles reunite for one night only, set a decade after the group went their separate ways. The updated Let It Be production will be premiered in the UK when it opens at Cardiff’s Wales Millennium Centre on 20 August 2018.
Let It Be is at Wales Millennium Centre 20 August – 25 August 2018
Sunset Boulevard- Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Tony Award®-winning masterpiece is coming to The Centre this month. Danny Mac is set to play impoverished screen writer Joe Gillis who, on the run from debt collectors, stumbles into the reclusive world of Norma Desmond, played by Ria Jones, and is seduced by her and her luxurious lifestyle. Joe becomes trapped in a claustrophobic world until his love for another woman leads him to try and break free, with dramatic consequences. 26 February – 3 March 2018
First Steps: A Child’s Sleeping Beauty- This hour-long, interactive show, specially adapted for children aged from three to seven, features ballet excerpts from The Sleeping Beauty, performed by Birmingham Royal Ballet’s amazing dancers and orchestra, interspersed with scenes in which a storyteller introduces the children to the music and the leading characters, and shares some technical magic 16 March 2018
Spamalot– Funnier than the Black Death! Lovingly ripped off from the hugely successful 1975 film Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Spamalot is a riotous comedy full of misfit knights, killer rabbits, dancing nuns and ferocious Frenchmen. Join King Arthur as he travels with his hapless Knights of the Round Table on a divine mission to locate the illusive Holy Grail – with uproarious consequences. 20 Mar – 24 Mar 2018
Cinderella-One of New Adventures’ most loved productions Matthew Bourne’s Cinderella is a thrilling and evocative love story, set in London during the Second World War.
Matthew Bourne said, “Cinderella is one of my most heartfelt works and a personal favourite amongst my re-imagined classic stories. I’m delighted to have brought together this cast of current star performers, experienced New Adventures veterans and exciting young talent. I’m thrilled to see another generation of Company dancers take on this beloved production” 10 April – 22 April 2018
ART – Serge, indulging his penchant for modern art, buys a large, expensive, completely white painting. Marc is horrified, and their relationship suffers considerable strain as a result of their differing opinions about what constitutes “art”. This French three-hander caused a sensation on the West End back in 1996. After extended runs in London and New York and a quartet of the world’s most prestigious theatre awards — Molière, Evening Standard, Olivier and Tony — ART has become a monument of 90s theatre. 28 May – 2 June 2018
FOR ONE NIGHT ONLY…
Brendan Cole: All Night Long– The show features every style of ballroom and Latin dance from Brendan and his hand-picked championship dancers, performed to the music and songs of some of the greatest legends and contemporary artistes.4 March 2018
Belle & Sebastian– The legendary indie-pop band, have embarked upon a new tour in support of their forthcoming album How to Solve our Human Problems, and will stop off at the Centre in March 2018. 8 March 2018
Max Boyce– He’s been entertaining people all over the world for more than 40 years with his ability to paint pictures in word and song. A huge new young audience has recently discovered this exceptional entertainer, taking him into their hearts and making him a true modern day folk hero. 10 March/8 April 2018
Jimmy Carr- A man who has devoted his life to crafting perfect jokes and has left a trail of laughter in his wake, Jimmy Carr‘s new tour will distil everything we love to laugh at and be shocked by, into one incredible, unparalleled night of entertainment.
11 March 2018
Russell Watson: Canzoni D’Amore– Captivating to watch and enchanting to listen to, “The People’s Tenor” continues to wow audiences with his enigmatic and entertaining live performances and returns to the stage with his brand new show Canzoni d’Amore.
25 March 2018
Justin’s Band- A brand new show for 2018! Join Justin and his friends on a musical journey singing lots of songs and learning about musical instruments along the way! An extra performance has now been added for Thursday 29 March at 3pm!
29-30 March 2018
Don McLean- McLean’s songs have been performed by artists as diverse as Madonna, Fred Astaire, Elvis Presley and Coolio, and he attracted the second largest audience in British history, next to the Rolling Stones. 6 May 2018