Glee Inspires Spin-Off Shows for British TheatreDate: 8 October 2010
A selection of Glee-inspired family shows look set to fill the UK's theatres this autumn, with producers keen to build on the success of the all-singing, all-dancing E4 television programme. Announced today, Gleemania will unite a selection of stars from reality TV talent shows, including X Factor, Britain’s Got Talent and Pop Idol with a UK concert tour of songs inspired by the Glee show choir phenomenon.
Gleemania will premier its showcase of music from eras past and Glee-inspired mash-ups at London’s Hammersmith HMV Apollo on 17 December and at the National Indoor Arena in Birmingham on 19 December 2010 prior to starting a five-month UK tour, with full dates to be announced. The show, which promises theatregoers "the amazing vocal talents of an ultimate pop group of singers" brings together singers who have appeared in a range of reality talent shows.
The male singers appearing include Rikki Loney a finalist from the 2009 season of X Factor; 18–year-old Shaun Smith, who appeared on Britain’s Got Talent; Grease Is the Word runner up Anthony Kavanagh; Pop Idol contestants Aaron Bayley and Andy Scott Lee, who also enjoyed chart success as member of boy band 3SL; and brothers David and Trevor Francis who performed as part of Revelation in Last Choir Standing.
The female singers making up the cast are X Factor contestant Nikitta Angus; Pop Stars – The Rivals runner up Emma Beard; former S Club Juniors member and X Factor finalist Stacey McClean; and X Factor contender Kimberley Southwick.
Gleemania is produced and has musical direction by record producer Simon Henderson whose credits include work with Robin Gibb and Peter Andre. The show is directed by David Wood whose choreographer credits includes working on the recent Spice Girls tour.
Gleemania follows in the footsteps of Don't Stop Believin' which is currently touring its "high octane music and dance extravaganza" around UK regional venues. Having started their tour in Blackpool on 2 September the show has since visited Bradford, Edinburgh, Stoke-On-Trent and ends its four-night run at the New Wimbledon Theatre tomorrow (9 October 2010). From Wimbledon the show will continue to Southampton, Derby, High Wycombe, Reading, Glasgow, Woking, Bromley, Wolverhampton, winding up in Sheffield on 4 December 2010.
Directed and staged by Carole Todd (Dreamboats & Petticoats), Don’t Stop Believin’ was the first live UK stage show dedicated to Golden Globe winning Glee and is billed as containing "haute couture, American footballers and cheerleaders" on top of a selection of Glee inspired tunes.
Finally, in addition to the New Wimbledon's Don't Stop Believin', London theatregoers will be treated to two evenings of show choirs, also inspired by Glee which will appear at the Arts Theatre for two performances on 10 and 17 October 2010.
Billed as Gleekfest, Sunday 10 October's performance will bring ToneAcity, recent contender's on Channel 5's show choir contest Don't Stop Believing, with their mix of well know songs, forgotten gems and, of course, obligatory mash-ups, to the West End stage. The show, which was recently seen at Deptford's Albany Theatre, has direction and choreography by Spencer James with musical direction by Katharine Woolley.
The following Sunday, Gleekfest will present Show Choir Sunday, With performances by DDGlee, Starling Arts and City Academy Choir, three of London's leading adult show choirs with over seventy performers taking to the Arts Theatre stage.