Photo Flash: BILLY ELLIOT Welcomes New Billy!

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Today, 22 February 2012, 13 year old Harris Beattie from Aberdeen, Scotland and 9 year old Dayna Dixon from Benton, Newcastle upon Tyne will join the West End cast of Billy Elliot the Musical which celebrates 7 years in at the Victoria Palace Theatre in May. Harris will become the twenty-ninth boy to play the title role in the West End and the 64th boy to play the role worldwide, including Jamie Bell who played Billy Elliot in the award-winning film. He is joined by Dayna who plays Debbie, dance teacher Mrs Wilkinson's daughter.

Harris will alternate the role of Billy with Kaine Ward (13 years old from Hertfordshire), Ryan Collinson (13 years old from Southport) and Adam Vesperman (13 years old from Seattle, Washington, USA) and Dayna will alternate the role of Debbie with Francesca Mango (12 years old from Northumberland) and Macy Stasiak (9 years old from Darlington).

Based on the Oscar nominated film, Billy Elliot the Musical is an inspirational story of one boy's dream to realise his ambitions against the odds. Set in the North East of England against the background of the historic 1984/85 miners' strike, Billy pursues his passion for dance in secret to avoid disapproval of his struggling family.

Billy Elliot the Musical features music by Elton John, book and lyrics by Lee Hall, is directed by Stephen Daldry with choreography by Peter Darling. The production features scenic design by Ian MacNeil, the associate director is Julian Webber, costume design is by Nicky Gillibrand, lighting design by Rick Fisher and sound design by Paul Arditti. Musical supervision and orchestrations are by Martin Koch.

The West End cast comprises Harris Beattie (13 years old from Aberdeen, Scotland), Kaine Ward (13 years old from Hertfordshire), Ryan Collinson (13 years old from Southport) and Adam Vesperman (13 years old from Seattle, Washington, USA) who alternate the role of Billy. Reece Barrett (13 years old from Exeter), Connor Kelly (13 years old from Scunthorpe), Connor Lawson (13 years old from Shotton, County Durham) and Joe Massey (12 years old from South Wirrell) who alternate the role of Billy's best friend Michael; Dayna Dixon (9 years old from Newcastle upon Tyne), Francesca Mango (12 years old from Northumberland) and Macy Stasiak (9 years old from Darlington), who alternate the role of Debbie.

They perform alongside Gillian Bevan (Mrs. Wilkinson), Deka Walmsley (Dad), Michael Peavoy (Tony), Ann Emery (Grandma), Sean Kearns (George), Kay Milbourne (Dead Mum), Simon Ray Harvey (Mr. Braithwaite), Barnaby Meredith (Older Billy) and ensemble members Craig Armstrong, David Bardsley, Paul Basleigh, Alan Bradshaw, Dawn Buckland, James Butcher, Spencer Cartwright, Lucinda Collins, Jaymz Denning, Gillian Elisa, Helen French, Sergio Giacomelli, Simon Ray Harvey, Kieran Jae, Ian Gareth Jones, Sean Kearns, Connor McAllister, Barnaby Meredith, Kay Milbourne, Steven Paget, Steph Parry, Ryan Pidgen, Dan Reilly and Mike Scott

The internationally award-winning show, which opened at the Victoria Palace Theatre in 2005, has been seen by almost 8 million people worldwide, including 3.6 million in the West End. Billy Elliot the Musical has also been staged on Broadway at the Imperial Theatre, as well as Sydney, Melbourne, Chicago, Toronto and Seoul, South Korea and is currently on tour across North America, with further international productions planned.

Billy Elliot the Musical is presented in London by Universal Pictures Stage Productions, Working Title Films and Old Vic Productions in association with Tiger Aspect and is based on the Universal Pictures/ Studio Canal film.

Photo Credit: Alastair Muir

Photo Flash: BILLY ELLIOT Welcomes New Billy!

Photo Flash: BILLY ELLIOT Welcomes New Billy!
Harris Beattie, Gillian Bevan

Photo Flash: BILLY ELLIOT Welcomes New Billy!
Gillian Bevan

Photo Flash: BILLY ELLIOT Welcomes New Billy!
Deka Walmsley, Ann Emery

Photo Flash: BILLY ELLIOT Welcomes New Billy!
Dayna Dixon

Photo Flash: BILLY ELLIOT Welcomes New Billy!

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