You’re Terrible Muriel!
Full Cast Announced for Muriel’s Wedding The Musical
Following an exhaustive search, Sydney Theatre Company and Global Creatures have announced that newcomer Maggie McKenna has won the lead role in one of the most anticipated shows of 2017 – Muriel’s Wedding The Musical!
The 20-year-old Melbourne born and raised actress has recently returned to Australia from Los Angeles where she trained at the prestigious American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA). This marks her professional stage debut in what will be the world premiere of the musical. This stage version of PJ Hogan’s iconic hit 90s Australian film has been updated by the writer himself, with original music by Kate Miller-Heidke and Keir Nuttall alongside those beloved ABBA numbers.
Muriel Heslop is back! And this time she’s singing. Stuck in a dead-end life in Porpoise Spit, Muriel is obsessed with the music of ABBA and dreaming of a fairytale wedding – the white dress, the church, the attention. Unfortunately, there’s one thing missing. A groom. Leaving small-town life, her long suffering mother and bullying father behind, she follows her dreams to Sydney with new best friend Rhonda. There she ends up with everything she ever wanted – a man, a fortune and a gazillion Twitter followers. That’s when things start to go really wrong.
PJ Hogan said, “When I made the film, Muriel was a difficult part to cast. So my smile was huge when I met Toni Collette. Almost 25 years later I smiled that same smile when I met Maggie McKenna.”
Jocelyn Moorhouse, who produced her husband’s film, added, “Maggie is a perfect choice to play Muriel Heslop on stage. She is brilliant, gorgeous and a natural comedienne, with the added bonus that she sings like an angel.”
Director Simon Phillips said, “It’s hard to describe the thrill you get when, after months of searching, you suddenly clap eyes on the person who feels destined to play a role. The odds of that happening are significantly raised when the bar has been set as high as Toni Collette’s performance in the film. But when Maggie McKenna sent us a gambit audition tape from LA, where she was studying at the time, we all felt that thrill. We hustled her back to the country, put her through her paces to check it wasn’t a trick of the camera and all mentally high-fived. It’s going to be a challenging ride for her I’m sure – a huge role to score at the age of 20 – but I feel sure she’s about to take Porpoise Spit by storm.”
Joining the Maggie is Justine Clarke as the long suffering Betty, with other members of the Heslop clan played by Briallen Clarke (Joanie), Michael Whalley (Perry) and Connor Sweeney (Malcolm), while Helen Dallimore plays the strangely ever-present beauty consultant, Deidre Chambers.
Celebrating her marriage to Chook (Aaron Tsindos), Tania Degano is brought to life by Christie Whelan Browne, accompanied by a posse of bridesmaids, two of whom are played by Manon Gunderson Briggs and Laura Murphy. Brice Nobes, the first guy to ever ask Muriel on a date, is played by Ben Bennett and Stephen Madsen is Olympic swimming hopeful Alexander Shkuratov, coached by Josh Quong Tart’s ruthless Ken. The 28-strong cast also includes Sheridan Harbridge, Mark Hill, Annie Aitken, Kaeng Chan, Tony Cogin, Adrian Li Donni and Kenneth Moraleda.
The dream theatre director/designer team of Simon Phillips and Gabriela Tylesova lead a stellar creative team which also includes choreographer Andrew Hallsworth, musical supervisor Guy Simpson and musical director Isaac Hayward.
For full information on cast and creative and to make bookings visit www.sydneytheatre.com.au
Get to know Maggie McKenna
Muriel’s Wedding The Musical
6 November 2017 to 27 January 2018
Roslyn Packer Theatre, Walsh Bay
Opening Night: Saturday 18 November at 7.30pm
Tickets now on sale: www.sydneytheatre.com.au or call 02 9250 1777