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Natalie Dew to Star as 'Jess' in West End's BEND IT LIKE BECKHAM Musical

The world premiere of the new British stage musical Bend It Like Beckham, directed by Gurinder Chadha, with original music by Howard Goodall, lyrics by Charles Hart, a new book by Paul Mayeda Berges and Gurinder Chadha, has found its leading lady.

The Daily Mail writes that Natalie Dew will star as 'Jess' at the Phoenix Theatre this summer.

"She [Jess] loves how David Beckham plays, and she wants to bend the ball into the net the way he does," Chadha told the Mail. "It's her passion. It also reflects how she wants to fit in."

Producer Sonia Friedman described the show as "a very powerful story about how great Britain is, because of immigration."

Dew played the role (portrayed by Parminder Nagra in the movie) in a workshop of the musical last year. Among Dew's recent theatre credits are the Royal Court's Teh Internet Is Serious Business and Hamlet at Northern Broadsides. She has also appeared in Romeo and Juliet (National Theatre), Rough Cuts (Royal Court) and Arabian Nights (RSC). On TV, Dew's credits include Lewis and Gavin and Stacey.

Jamie Campbell Bower will play 'Joe', the football team's manager. A film actor and singer for the group The Darling Buds, Bower has appeared on the big screen in Sweeney Todd, the Twilight movies, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, and the Mortal Instruments series.

Also in the cast are Preeya Kalidas, Lauren Samuels, Jamal Andreas, Ronni Ancona, Tony Jayawardena and Natasha Jayetileke.

Bend It Like Beckham features choreography & musical staging by Aletta Collins; set design by Miriam Buether; costume design by Katrina Lindsay; lighting design by Neil Austin; sound design by Richard Brooker; musical direction by Nigel Lilley; and orchestrations by Howard Goodall & Kuljit Bhamra.

Playing at the Phoenix Theatre from 15 May 2015, with its opening night on 24 June 2015, Bend It Like Beckham is produced in the West End by Sonia Friedman Productions.

In BEND IT LIKE BECKHAM, Jess needs extra time. She is facing the most important decision of her life; live up to family expectations of university, career and marriage, or follow in the footsteps of her hero David Beckham. When the talented teenage footballer is spotted playing football in Southall, a world of opportunities opens up before her. But as the day of her sister's traditional Indian wedding approaches, Jess needs to pick sides. From the first pass in the park to the final free-kick, Bend It Like Beckham is a joyous musical comedy with vibrant characters featuring a new score with a Punjabi kick. This brand new British musical is a funny, glorious and uplifting adaptation of the much-loved hit film about refusing to watch from the sidelines, bending the rules, and scoring that deciding goal.

On film, the British comedy drama Bend It Like Beckham starred Parminder Nagra, Keira Knightley, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Anupam Kher, Shaznay Lewis and Archie Panjabi, and was released in 2002, directed by Gurinder Chadha and written by Gurinder Chadha, Guljit Bindra and Paul Mayeda Berges. Following the international release of Bend It Like Beckham the film, produced by Deepak Nayar and Gurinder Chadha, went on to win multiple awards worldwide.?


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