Star casting announced for Belgrade shows

Lisa Maxwell as Judy Garland in End of the Rainbow
Lisa Maxwell as Judy Garland in End of the Rainbow

Casting has been announced for five star-studded shows coming to The Belgrade Theatre in Coventry.

Shows include a new UK tour of End of the Rainbow, a stage premiere of Jackie the Musical and Menopause the Musical. The Bill and Loose Woman’s Lisa Maxwell, Irish pop icon Linda Nolan and Eastenders Cheryl Fergison will star in these shows.

Shane Richie and Jessie Wallace

Shane Richie and Jessie Wallace

Fans of theatrical intrigue can look forward to a classic installment of murder mystery in a brand new stage adaptation of Frederick Knott’s darkly gripping thriller, Dial M For Murder from January 26 to 30 starring Coronation Street’s Oliver Mellor, Hollyoaks actress Terry Dwyer and Brookside’s Marcus Hutton. Famously filmed by Alfred Hitchcock, Frederick Knott’s intense and darkly gripping thriller is brought to life on stage in a new production by talking Scarlet and promises to keep you on the end of your seats right up until the nail-biting climax.

This will be followed by a visit from Loose Women’s Lisa Maxwell in a new UK tour of the celebrated West-End smash hit, End of The Rainbow from February 23 to 27.

Best known for her role as Samantha Nixon in ITV’s The Bill from 2002 and 2009, and as a panelist on ITV’s Loose Women from 2009 – 2014, Lisa will take up the role of Judy Garland in this brand new touring production directed by Daniel Buckroyd.

She will be joined on stage by celebrated stage actor and musical star, Gary Wilmott and Hollyoaks star, Sam Attwater, best known for winning the sixth series of ITV’s Dancing on Ice in 2011 and his stage roles in the 40th Anniversary tour of The Rocky Horror Show, Dreamboats and Petticoats in the West End, and the 2014 UK Tour of Seven Brides for Seven Brothers.

Featuring Garland’s most memorable songs including The Man That Got Away, Come Rain Or Come Shine, The Trolley Song and of course Somewhere Over The Rainbow, End of the Rainbow is a fiercely funny and emotionally charged musical play filled with Garland’s legendary tenacity, razor-sharp wit and once-in-a-generation voice.

Before the age of mobiles, online dating, Facebook and Snapchat, there was only one place a girl could go for her weekly fashion and dating fix…Jackie Magazine. Set to a pulsating soundtrack of classic 70s hits including pop idols Donny Osmond, David Cassidy, Marc Bolan and many more, Jackie The Musical is a fun and feisty new show for anyone who remembers the 70s and will run on the Belgrade Main stage from March 15 - 19.

Taking up the role of Jackie is stage and screen actress Janet Dibley. Janet became a household name in the 1980s, co-starring with Nicholas Lyndhurst in ITV’s primetime The Two of Us, playing Elaine Walker for all four series.

She went on to star as Lorna Cartwright in EastEnders, Carol McGarry in four series of Kay Mellor’s Fat Friends, Deborah Johnson in The Chase and most recently as Chaz Moore, in Broadchurch.

She will be joined by Olivier Award nominee Graham Bickley (Ragtime, Bread) as John and Nicholas Bailey, best known for his role as Anthony Trueman in EastEnders in the role of Max.

Graham Bickley became a household name playing Joey Boswell in Carla Lane’s much loved BBC TV series Bread. He has starred in a host of hit West End musicals, including Les Misérables, Miss Saigon, Sunset Boulevard and Ragtime, for which received an Olivier Award nomination. He regularly appears with the BBC Concert Orchestra and in concert halls across the country.

Looking ahead to April, Irish songstress Linda Nolan stars alongside Eastenders’ favourite Cheryl Fergison in the hilarious musical parody, Menopause The Musical from April 21-23. Staged to classic tunes from the ‘60s, ‘70s and ‘80s, millions of women worldwide have been laughing about for 14 years!

Set in a department store, four women with seemingly nothing in common but a black lace bra on sale, come to find they have more to share than ever imagined. The cast makes fun of their woeful hot flashes, forgetfulness, mood swings, wrinkles, night sweats and chocolate binges. A sisterhood is created between these diverse women as they realize that menopause is no longer The Silent Passage, but a stage in every woman’s life that is perfectly normal!

The above casting follows the previously announced tours of Tell Me On A Sunday starring Jodie Prenger and a new stage adaptation of Peter James’ multi-million selling novel, The Perfect Murder starring Eastenders’ favourites Jessie Wallace and Shane Ritchie.

Tickets for all of the above shows are now on sale. For tickets, call the Belgrade Theatre Box Office on 024 7655 3055 or visit the website where cheaper tickets are available.