Friday, September 30

Tracie Bennett joins Follies starring Philip Quast, Imelda Staunton and Janie Dee

Updated 17th March: Dawn Hope who is  playing Stella Deems, will lead a big show-stopping number called Who’s That Woman. Updated 23rd December: Tracie Bennett is to  play Carlotta Campion: the former showgirl and one-time movie star who has been to hell and back who sings Sondheim’s showstopper number I’m Still Here: which was originated by Yvonne De Carlo on Broadway and by Dolores Gray (followed by Eartha Kitt) in the 1987 London production produced by Cameron Mackintosh.

Bennett has received two Olivier Awards for Best Supporting Role in a Musical for her performances in the musicals She Loves Me and Hairspray with an addition nomination for her work in High Society. Bennett was also nominated for the Olivier Award for Best Actress in a Musical for Mrs Henderson Presents while her performance as Judy Garland in End of the Rainbow earned her an Olivier nomination for Best Actress in a Play and a Tony Award nomination in the same category when the production transferred to Broadway.

Updated 25th November: Peter Forbes will play Buddy Plummer who married to  Sally Durant played by Imelda Staunton.

Updated 12th October:It has just been announced that Philip Quast is to play Benjamin Stone  joining Imelda Staunton  as Sally Durant Plummer with Janie Dee as Phyllis Stone with  Josephine Barstow as Heidi in a London revival of Follies by Stephen Sondheim and James Goldman.

Olivier award wining Quast has a list of West End credits including  George Seurat  in Sondheim's Pulitzer Prize winning musical Sunday in the Park with George, Emile de Becque in South Pacific, Judge Turpin in a concert version of Sweeney Todd at London's Royal Festival Hall and Javert in Les Miserables. 

Directed by Dominic Cooke, the show will open in the Olivier Theatre at the National in August 2017. Dates still to be announced.

When former members of the Weismann Follies reunite on the eve of their theater's demolition, two couples remember their past and face the harsher realities of the present. In the crumbling glamour of the theater, The Shadows of their younger selves remind them of the complicated steps they've danced-both on the stage and throughout their lives. Containing classics including   "Broadway Baby," "I'm Still Here," "Too Many Mornings, "Could I Leave You?" and "Losing My Mind," Follies is an excellent representations of  the vaudeville days between the two World Wars.

The show was originally produced on Broadway by Harold Prince with orchestrations by Jonathan Tunick, opening in April 1971 starring Dorothy Collins, John McMartin, Gene Nelson, and Alexis Smith. It ran for 522 performances and received seven Tony Awards, including Best Original Score.

Imelda Staunton is set for a busy time in the West End and on Broadway as she is also appearing with Game of Thrones star, Conleth Hill, in a West End revival of WHO'S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF? at the Harold Pinter Theatre for a limited season from 22 February to 27 May 2017. She has also said there are plans for her to take her award winning performance of Momma Rose in  the Chichester and Savoy production of Gypsy to Broadway in 2018.

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