JENNA RUSSELL AND WILLEMIJN VERKAIK TO STAR IN ANDREW LIPPA’S LONDON CONCERT DEBUT.
West End and Broadway actress Jenna Russell and International star of Wicked, Willemijn Verkaik were announced today as two of the special guests appearing alongside Tony and Grammy award nominated composer and lyricist Andrew Lippa in his debut London concert, this November 17. Also appearing, by introduction, is current Les Misérables Eponine Carrie Hope Fletcher.
The man behind Broadway’s Big Fish, The Wild Party and The Addams Family comes to London’s St James Theatre this November taking the audience through his life and career as a writer and composer. The concert will exclusively preview music from his latest Broadway creation Big Fish – a new musical adaptation based on the book by Daniel Wallace and the Tim Burton film (recently opened at the Neil Simon Theatre, directed and choreographed by Susan Stroman) – and will also feature music from his hit shows, as well as his lesser known works and a selection of ‘lost’ material.
Multi-award winning actress Jenna Russell is best known for her performance in the role of Dot/Marie in Sunday in the Park with George, in both the West End and on Broadway, and has recently finished playing Mary in Merrily We Roll Along at the Harold Pinter Theatre to critical acclaim. Her relationship with Sondheim’s work has been recognised both here and in America, with Drama Desk and Tony Award nominations for her performance in Sunday in the Park with George and a 2007 Olivier Award win for Best Actress in a Musical. Prior to this, Jenna received a nomination for the 2006 Olivier Awards in the Best Actress in a Musical category for her role as Sarah Brown in Guys and Dolls playing opposite Ewan McGregor. It was later in 2010 that Jenna could be seen in the Olivier Award winning production of Into The Woods at the Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre, playing the role of the Baker’s wife. Other work includes multiple appearances with the RSC including The Winters Tale, As You Like It and Alan Ayckbourn’s Wildest Dreams. She played Amy in the recent West End revival of David Hare’s play Amy’s View directed by Peter Hall. In 2010, Jenna made her return to the National Theatre to star alongside Mark Gatiss and Catherine Tate in the riotously funny Season’s Greeting.
Dutch actress Willemijn Verkaik opens in the West End production of Wicked as Elphaba later this year having played the character over 1,000 times. Since making her Broadway debut, she is the only actress to have performed the green witch in three languages, receiving three major awards for the role since 2007.
European musical credits include Donna in Mamma Mia, Elisabeth in Elisabeth, Killer Queen in We Will Rock You and Amneris in Aida. At home she has made numerous concert and television appearances and can also be heard on the original German cast recording of Wicked. Willemijn sang at New York’s Birdland Jazz Club alongside composers Jason Robert Brown, Stephen Schwartz and Scott Alan, also performing at Scott’s London concert at IndigO2 earlier this year.
Earlier this year Willemijn recorded the voice of Elsa for the German and Dutch language versions of Disney’s Frozen, which opens in cinemas in the coming weeks.
Carrie Hope Fletcher is currently making her West End debut playing the role of Eponine in Les Misérables at The Queen’s Theatre, London As a child she previously appeared as Jane Banks in the Original Cast of Mary Poppins at the Prince Edward theatre, and as Jemima Potts in Original Cast of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang at The London Palladium.
Other work includes the recording of the Official 2012 Olympic Mascot’s song On a Rainbow and supporting Sheytoons following a guest spot on Ramin Karimloo’s ‘Road to Find Out’ tour earlier that year. Alongside Carrie’s acting and singer/songwriter career Carrie is also known for her series of videos on her YouTube channel ‘itswaypastmybedtime’ which has gained her a dedicated following of over 300,000 subscribers.
Address: St. James Theatre, 12 Palace Street, London SW1E 5JA
Dates: 17 November 2013
Performances: 2pm and 6.30pm
Ticket Prices: £25/ £30/ £32.50/ £35
Box Office: 0844 264 2140