In Musicality, contenders fought off competition from 2,000 other hopefuls for the chance to appear in Chicago for one night only. The winners (pictured) - who were chosen by a panel of top theatre professionals including director Clive Paget and Chicago’s original musical director Gareth Valentine - are all ‘ordinary’ people.
They comprise: primary teacher Matthew Goodgame (who will play Billy Flynn in the musical), waitress Rebecca Dent (as Roxie Hart), box office assistant Donna Hazelton (Mama Morton), physio Caroline Graham (Velma Kelly) and plumber’s assistant Warren Sollars (who will join the ensemble).
The final show in the Musicality series will be aired on Saturday 27 November 2004, with highlights from the contestant’s performance of Chicago being screened on Channel 4 on 1 December 2004.
Last week (on 18 November), Chicago celebrated its seventh birthday in the West End. Two of its current stars – Whatsonstage.com Award winner John Barrowman and Jennifer Ellison (coincidentally, a reality TV champ herself, of chef Gordon Ramsay’s Hell’s Kitchen) – have extended their limited contracts until 11 and 4 December 2004, respectively. They’re joined in the cast by Anna-Jane Casey as Velma Kelly, Paul Baker as Amos Hart and Sharon D Clarke as Mama Morton.
- by Hannah Kennedy