Full Cast Confirmed For IN THE WILLOWS
Full casting has been confirmed for the UK tour of In The Willows: the explosive brand new musical retelling of The Wind In The Willows, from the award-winning Metta Theatre. Olivier award-winning actor, 'the nation's favourite pantomime dame', and star of BBC's The Story of Tracey Beaker, Clive Rowe will star as Mr Badger, while X Factor favourite Seann Miley Moore (Duck) and Let It Shine performer Matt Knight (Chief Weasel) join the cast.
The production opens at the Exeter Northcott on 22 February 2019, touring the UK until 1 June, with a press night on Thursday 21 March at the Belgrade Theatre, Coventry.
With spectacular street dance choreographed by the award-winning Rhimes Lecointe (Associate choreographer for Zoo Nation, and Artistic Director of Boudicea), the production will also star deaf street dancer Chris Fonseca. In The Willows will incorporate British Sign Language (BSL) into the choreography for a unified experience for D/deaf and hearing audiences alike. There will also be audio description available for all performances across the tour.
Mole's first day in 'The Willows'. Her classmates look a bit scary. Surely Mr Badger will look out for her, as streetwise Rattie, rich kid Toad and cheeky Otter teach her the ways of The Riverbank. But when Toad gets locked up for joyriding, the Weasel Clan break into his (lily)pad. It's now only a matter of time before Chief Weasel reveals Mole's dark secret...
This classic story is brought leaping into the twenty first century. Featuring ballads, beats and backflips, this new musical will be fun for the whole family.
Olivier-award winner Clive Rowe MBE has had an illustrious career on stage and screen; best-known to family audiences for his role as 'Norman "Duke" Ellington in BBC Children's drama The Story of Tracy Beaker, Clive's extensive stage credits include Me and My Girl (Chichester), Guys and Dolls (NT and West End), Chicago (Adelphi), The Light Princess (NT), Kiss Me Kate (Chichester and Old Vic), and many appearances in panto, particularly at the Hackney Empire.
Originally from Sydney Australia, Seann Miley Moore stole the nation's heart as a finalist on the UK's X-Factor. Mentored by Radio 1's Nick Grimshaw, he received a standing ovation for his rendition of Queen's The Show Must Go On. Since then, Seann has toured globally, recently released his second EP 4TrackBitch and last year, with a triumphant return to his home town, sang his original song & Pride anthem We In Luv at the Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras. Seann's fearless sense of style and self-expression has inspired many. So much so that he found himself on the cover of the UK's Gay Times and was chosen as a representative of Missguided's International Fashion Campaign Keep Being You.
After suffering meningitis, street dancer Chris Fonseca was made deaf in both ears from a very young age. He dances with the use of a Cochlear Implant in one ear, and the sensation of musical vibrations through his body. In 2010, Chris joined the all deaf dance group, Def Motion. In 2014, he joined Studio 68 dance training academy as a teacher and choreographer. He is now a solo dancer.
In The Willows will also be reaching out to young performers across the country to appear onstage in the production at their local theatre. Beginning with a free dance workshop from leading dancer Sheila Attah - open to beginners and performers with access needs - successful performers aged 17-25 will have the chance to perform onstage alongside some of the country's leading musical performers.
The production will also be encouraging D/deaf performers to apply, given the production's inclusion of British Sign Language (BSL) into the choreography. The audition process will take place at selected regional workshops, detailed at: www.mettatheatre.co.uk/workshops