Actor, director and choreographer Tim Flavin has assembled a company of West End favourites for a major new production of the 1968 musical comedy Dames at Sea. The revival will have a limited five-week run, from 12 August to 17 September 2005, at Eastbourne’s Devonshire Theatre ahead of a planned West End transfer.

With stars in her eyes, a prayer in her heart and only a pair of tap shoes in her suitcase, young Ruby arrives on Broadway to find her fame and fortune. In true musical fashion, she lands a part in the chorus and falls in love. But life is not plain sailing. It’s opening night and the theatre is about to be demolished. Can the show go on… on board a US Navy battleship?

A parody of film musical extravaganzas popularised by Busby Berkeley in the 1930s and 1940s, Dames at Sea has a book and lyrics by George Haimsohn and Robin Miller and music by Jim Wise. This new production is designed by Julie Godfrey with sound by Clem Rawling and lighting by Douglas Morgan.

In addition to directing and choreographing, Flavin leads the cast, which also includes Kathryn Evans (Evita, Follies), Jimmy Johnston (Oklahoma!, The Pirates of Penzance, Miss Saigon), Helen Anker (On the Town, Beautiful and Damned, Contact), Tiffany Graves (Chicago, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum) and Billy Boyle (Beauty and the Beast, Some Like It Hot).

Tim Flavin is best known for his performing credits which include: in the West End, On Your Toes (for which he won an Olivier), My One and Only, Crazy for You, Kiss Me, Kate and Side by Side by Sondheim; and on Broadway, Happy New Year, Zorba, The Pirates of Penzance and The Most Happy Fella. As a director/choreographer, Flavin's credits also take in productions of Me and My Girl, Follies, Great Balls of Fire, The Gay Divorce, Stepping Out, Cabaret and Little Shop of Horrors.

- by Terri Paddock