Ashton Mervis, Michael Fry and Levi Maron
will alternate as Benji in PRISCILLA.

Showtime Management, the South African producers of the PRISCILLA QUEEN OF THE DESERT, is proud to introduce the three Johannesburg boys who will join the completely South African cast when the show opens at The Teatro at Montecasino in April. The three boys will alternate in the role of Benji.

Eight-year-old Michael Fry, nine-year-old Ashton Mervis and ten-year-old Levi Maron are excited to be making their professional theatre debut in this major production, playing the son of the show's leading man, Tick (played by Daniel Buys).

Benji is the real reason Tick convinces friends, Bernadette (David Dennis) and Felicia (Phillip Schnetler), to head off into the desert in a big bus for a four-week stint at a Hotel Casino Resort in Alice Springs, the resort that just happens to be managed by his estranged wife, Marion (Taryn-Lee Buys - who, interestingly, is the real-life wife of her estranged stage husband). Tick has not seen eight-year-old Benji for years and is nervous about exposing him to his colourful lifestyle, the plot hinging on what Benji will make of his father's sexuality and career.

The youngest Benji, Michael Fry, attends St David's Marist, Inanda, where he is a member of the Junior Prep Choir and Drama Club. He loves music and singing and has starred in a number of school productions. Fry is learning to play the piano and can sometimes be found composing his own music. When he is not busy with music, Fry's other passion is playing cricket.

King David Sandton learner, Ashton Mervis, attends musical theatre classes and he is learning hip hop. Mervis has performed in school productions including THE LION KING. He enjoys playing the drums, piano and guitar as well as listening to music and creating new dance routines and break dance moves. He also enjoys playing sports.

The youngest of three male siblings, Levi Maron is a Grade 5 pupl at King David Linksfield Primary School. He enjoys water sports and reading but is at his happiest when he is singing and playing the piano.

South African producer, Hazel Feldman of Showtime Management, comments:

The three Cape Town Benjis are wonderful young actors who have thrived in their role and we look forward to welcoming their Johannesburg counterparts, confident that they too will grow and learn while working with the show's multi-talented all South African cast and creative team.

Presented by Showtime Management in association with Lunchbox Theatrical Productions and Nullarbor Productions and brought to South Africa by BBC First, PRISCILLA QUEEN OF THE DESERT recently opened in Cape Town. This uplifting tale of three drag artist friends who hop aboard a battered old bus also known as Priscilla and go off on the adventure of a lifetime through the Australian Outback, to perform in Alice Springs is based on the Oscar-winning film THE ADVENTURES OF PRISCILLA, QUEEN OF THE DESERT. The show features a hit parade of dance-floor favourites including "I Will Survive", "Hot Stuff", "Finally", "Boogie Wonderland", "Go West", "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" and "I Love The Nightlife", all performed in hundreds of outrageous costumes and extraordinary headdresses on and around a ten-metre-long customised bus weighing 6 tonnes.

Book to see this extravaganza at Computicket. PRISCILLA QUEEN OF THE DESERT contains strong language and adult themes, therefore parental guidance is recommended for children under the age of 12.

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