Wynette Bio-Musical Kicks Off UK-Wide Tour 7 SeptDate: 9 August 1999
A new bio-musical detailing the rags-to-riches story of Tammy Wynette, the 'first lady' of country music, embarks on a national tour next month. Stand By Your Man, by Peter Quilter, opens on 7 September at the Gordon Craig Theatre, Stevenage, before continuing to 14 venues over 26 weeks.
From humble beginnings, Wynette battled against the odds to become one of the world's greatest singing stars. The five-time divorcee married first at seventeen, leaving her husband while pregnant with her third child, and then toiled as a beautician before having her first successful single, 'Apartment No. 9', in 1966. During her career, Wynette recorded more than 50 albums and had 32 straight No. 1 country hits. Wynette's third husband was George Jones, another country superstar. Together, the couple became known as 'Mr & Mrs Country Music'. Later lovers included the Hollywood actor Burt Reynolds. Wynette died in her sleep on 6 April 1998.
The new musical includes many of Wynette's biggest hits including the 'Stand By Your Man' of the title, 'D-I-V-O-R-C-E' and 'Your Good Girl's Gonna Go Bad'.
Helen Hobson plays Wynette. Hobson has appeared in numerous West End and national tour musicals including Blood Brothers, Les Miserables, Chess, Aspects of Love, Cats, My Fair Lady, Heathcliff and Tommy. She is joined by Tim Hensler as George Jones and Darren Machin as Burt Reynolds.
Peter Quilter wrote the book for the pop musical Boyband which is currently playing at the West End's Gielgud Theatre. Stand By Your Man is directed by Christopher Dunham, who also directed Boyband, with musical direction by Simon Fricker, design by Christine Bradnam, lighting by Bob Bustance and costumes by Glynis Baynard.
Following Stevenage, Stand By Your Man visits Croydon, York, Newcastle, Halifax, Nottingham, Worthing, Oxford, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Liverpool, Bournemouth, Birmingham and Woking.