Photo Flash: First Look at Gavin Lee, Kristen Beth Williams and More in West End's TOP HAT
Seventy seven years after its movie release which saw Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers playing the roles of Jerry Travers and Dale Tremont, Matthew White's production arrived in the West End in April 2012 having completed a 20 week sell-out UK tour. Performed by a cast of 31 and accompanied by a live band of 15, this new musical comedy includes Irving Berlin classics from the original movie. A further ten numbers have been interpolated from Berlin's 1200 strong back catalogue. In November last year Top Hat won the Evening Standard Theatre Award for London's Best Night Out. The production has also been nominated for 5 Whatsonstage.com Awards.
Jerry Travers, the famous American tap dancer, arrives in London to appear in his first West End show. Travers meets the irresistible Dale Tremont, the girl of his dreams, and follows her across Europe in an attempt to win her heart.
Ensemble and swing members are Michelle Andrews, Caroline Bateson, Jeremy Batt, Charlie Bull, Alan Burkitt, Matthew Cheney, Louise Davidson, Russell-Leighton Dixon, Matt Gillett, Jonny Godbold, Ian Goss, Fenton Gray, Alyn Hawke, Lauren Jade, Paul Kemble, Jenny Legg, Martin McCarthy, Grace McKee, Debbie Paul, Holly Rostron, Callum Train, Lois Urwin, Graham Vick, Alexandra Waite-Roberts and ARon Wild.
Gavin Lee returns to the West End where he previously originated the role of Bert in the London production of Mary Poppins for which he was Laurence Olivier award nominated. He went on to play the role on Broadway for which he received Drama Desk and Theatre World Awards as well as a Tony Award nomination. While in New York he appeared at Carnegie Hall in Showboat and on television guest starred in Law and Order SUV and The Good Wife. His other London credits include Crazy For You, Peggy Sue Got Married, Me and My Girl, Over My Shoulder, Oklahoma and Contact. His regional theatre credits include Singin' In The Rain, Snoopy, Noel Coward's Masterpieces, Of Thee I Sing, Saturday Night, Chicago and Alan Ayckbourn's Whenever. Gavin Lee is extremely grateful to Cameron Mackintosh, Tom Schumacher and Kenny Wax for making this opportunity possible.
Kristen Beth Williams joins the cast of Top Hat directly from the Broadway production of Nice Work If You Can Get It and previously Anything Goes, both directed and choreographed by Kathleen Marshall. She has also appeared in the Broadway production of Promises Promises directed by Rob Ashford. She has been regular performer in the City Centre Encores! seasons performing in Follies, Applause, Face The Music and The Marvellous Wondrettes. On tour in the US she has been seen in White Christmas, Turn of the Century, Singin in the Rain and Chicago.
Clive Hayward has most recently been seen at the Trafalgar Studios as Bernard Woolley in Yes Prime Minister. Previously his theatre credits include Much Ado About Nothing at Wyndham's Theatre, Private Lives and Cyrano de Bergerac at the Royal Exchange Theatre, Earthquakes in London for The National Theatre and A Chorus of Disapproval for The Mill at Sonning. On screen his credits include Private Peaceful, Silent Witness and Prime Suspect.
Alex Gaumond was last seen in the West End playing Galileo in We Will Rock You and Emmett Forrest in Legally Blonde the Musical. His many other musical theatre credits include Desperately Seeking Susan at the Novello Theatre, the UK tour of the Donmar Warehouse production of Guys and Dolls, Sunday in the Park with George at Wyndham's Theatre, The Full Monty at the Prince of Wales Theatre and on tour in the UK, Kiss Me Kate for the Yvonne Arnaud Theatre, Miss Saigon on tour world wide and Something About You at Jermyn Street Theatre. His many recordings include The Concrete Jungle, Scrooge and the Sondheim Tonight Gala Concert. His film credits include Between, Jeffrey, Table For Four, Paranoia and Locked Out. His first single, Here I Am, was released in June last year.
Directed by Matthew White and choreographed by Bill Deamer,Top Hat has set designs by Hildegard Bechtler, costume designs by Jon Morrell, wigs by Campbell Young, lighting design by Peter Mumford, sound by Gareth Owen, new orchestrations by Chris Walker, musical supervision by Richard Balcombe and musical direction by Daniel Jackson. With music and lyrics by Irving Berlin and based on the RKO motion picture, the screenplay by Dwight Taylor and Allan Scott has been adapted for the stage by Matthew White and Howard Jacques and is presented by arrangement with RKO Pictures LLC, Warner Bros Theatre Ventures Inc. and the Irving Berlin Music Company. The original London cast recording of Top Hat was recently released by First Night Records.
For more information visit: www.tophatonstage.com
Photo Credit: Brinkhoffand Mogenburg