Ben Freeman Joins HAPPY DAYS Tour as 'The Fonz'; Full Cast Announced!
Amy Anzel for Sunday Monday Ltd in association with Todd Ruppert of RTR International, just announced that West End leading man and "Emmerdale" star, Ben Freeman, will take on the iconic role of 'The Fonz' in the UK Premiere and national tour of Happy Days - A New Musical, alongside Cheryl Baker as 'Mrs Cunningham' and the previously announced Heidi Range as 'Pinky Tuscadero'.
Directed and choreographed by Olivier Award nominee Andrew Wright, Happy Days - A New Musical will open at the Churchill Theatre Bromley onTuesday 14 January 2014 (previews from Saturday 11 January), before embarking on a national tour. The full tour schedule can be found at www.happydaysthemusical.co.uk
Ben Freeman can currently be seen as 'Fiyero' in "Wicked" at London's Apollo Victoria Theatre. His other West End credits include 'Warner' in "Legally Blonde", and 'Norman' in "Dreamboats and Petticoats". Ben is probably best known to tv audiences as 'Scott Windsor' in "Emmerdale".
As a member of the pop group Bucks Fizz, Cheryl Baker won the Eurovision Song Contest in 1981, and has subsequently had more than 20 hit records including three number ones. She made her theatrical debut in the musical "Footloose", starring in both the inaugural tour and in the West End. Her other musicals include 'Mrs Potts' in "Beauty and the Beast" and "Menopause The Musical". A television regular, last year Cheryl took part in "Celebrity Masterchef" and she came in as first runner-up on "Pop Star To Opera Star" in 2011.
HEIDI RANGE is best known for being the longest serving current member of the multiplatinum selling British girl group, the Sugababes. Last year, Heidi took part in the ITV series, Dancing on Ice, and subsequently in the Dancing on Ice live UK tour. Heidi was one of this year's "Celebrity Masterchef" contestants.
The rest of the cast includes: Lucy-Jane Adcock, Charlie Allen, Henry Davis, Ray Gardner, Emma Harrold, Grace Holdstock, Katie Monks, Eddie Myles, James Paterson, Edwin Ray, Sam Robinson, Andrew Waldron, Scott Waugh and Jason Winter.
Happy Days - A New Musical is written by Garry Marshall, the legendary creator of the popular television series. Garry is also the director of many world-wide hit films including "Pretty Woman", "Beaches" and "The Princess Diaries 1&2". It includes 21 original songs by Oscar, Grammy and Golden Globe award-winning Hall of Fame Songwriter, Paul Williams ("Bugsy Malone", "Evergreen", "Rainy Days and Mondays"). The show also includes the much-loved Happy Days theme tune from the TV show.
Henry Winkler, the original Fonz from the television series, will serve as Creative Consultant, working alongside the director in creating the 'Happy Days' world of 1959 America and guiding the cast in creating their ever so familiar characters, especially that of 'The Fonz'.
Happy Days - A New Musical is a hilarious feel-good musical that is guaranteed to have you rockin' and rollin' all week long! This brand new UK Tour based on the hit TV series features the unforgettable 'King of Cool' Arthur 'The Fonz' Fonzarelli. Join your favourite '50's family, the Cunninghams and the rest of the gang - Potsie, Ralph Malph, Joanie and Chachi as they battle to save their beloved diner Arnold's from demolition. In a race against time, can everyone's favourite hero 'The Fonz' save the day?
Andrew Wright is a director and choreographer whose most recent work includes Chichester Festival Theatre's and Cameron Mackintosh's "Barnum" (Theatre in the Park), and "Singin' in the Rain" (Palace Theatre, National Tour and Chichester Festival Theatre) for which he won Best Choreographer at the What's On Stage Awards 2013 and was nominated for Best Choreographer at the Olivier Awards 2012 and Broadway World Awards 2011, as well as the recent national tour of "Wonderful Town".