Evita Roger Makes West End Play Debut in BoeingDate: 11 May 2007
Argentine star Elena Roger – who made her West End musical debut last year in the title role of Evita, which finishes at the Adelphi Theatre on 26 May (See News, 28 Feb 2007) – will make her West End play debut, three days later, in Boeing-Boeing. From 29 May, she’ll join other new cast members – Doon Mackichan, Adrian Dunbar and Neil Stuke – in Matthew Warchus’ hit revival of Marc Camoletti’s Sixties sex farce, which is currently booking to 20 October 2007 at the Comedy Theatre.
In Boeing Boeing, Parisian architect Bernard thought he could easily cope with his three air hostess fiancées. It was all a question of timetables and a reliable, long-suffering housekeeper who reluctantly has the role of romantic air-traffic controller. When old school chum Robert arrives, Bernard relishes the chance to show his wide-eyed friend his first-class operation at work. Unfortunately, schedules change, flights are delayed and a new turbo-charged Boeing aircraft is introduced, causing chaos.
Elena Roger, who takes over from Daisy Beaumont as Italian stewardess Gabriella in Boeing-Boeing, received Best Actress in a Musical nominations in both the Laurence Olivier and Whatsonstage.com Awards for Evita. Her other stage credits in her native Argentina include Nine, Beauty and the Beast, Les Misérables and Saturday Night Fever. Doon Mackichan is best known from TV sketch show Smack the Pony, which she co-wrote and performed with Fiona Allen and Sally Phillips. She takes over from fellow comedic actress and Green Wing star Michelle Gomez as Lufthansa stewardess Gretchen.
Adrian Dunbar and Neil Stuke succeed Roger Allam and Mark Rylance as Bernard and Robert, respectively. Dunbar has starred in Hear My Song, The Crying Game and The General on film, and on stage, was seen last year in Exiles at the National. Stuke is best known to TV fans from Nineties sitcom Game On. His many theatre credits include Blue/Orange, A Night at the Dogs, Mojo and American Buffalo.
The newly announced cast members join other fresh arrivals Patricia Hodge, who has taken over from Frances de la Tour to play housekeeper Bertha from 30 April to 23 June, and Amy Nuttall, who replaces Tamzin Outhwaite as American stewardess Gloria from 14 May (See News, 17 Apr 2007).
Boeing-Boeing, which originally premiered in the mid-Sixties, held the world record for the longest-running comedy in the West End, playing over 2,000 performances before transferring to Broadway. This production, opened on 15 February (previews from 3 February), is directed by Matthew Warchus and designed by Rob Howell, with lighting by Hugh Vanstone. It’s presented by Sonia Friedman Productions, Act Productions, Matthew Byam Shaw, Robert G Bartner and Bob Boyett.
- by Terri Paddock