We know you’ve been wondering who will bring the glorious roles of Miss Honey, Miss Trunchbull and the wacky Wormwoods to life in the highly anticipated Australian premiere production of Matilda The Musical.
Don’t worry – your wait is over, and have we got news for you!
The principal adult cast of Matilda The Musical were announced this morning in the lead up to an Australian premiere at Sydney’s Lyric Theatre on July 28 this year – and they’re an exciting cast, bursting with talent.
The Royal Shakespeare Company, Louise Withers, Michael Coppel and Michael Watt have confirmed that Marika Aubrey (Man of La Mancha, South Pacificand creator of AussieTheatre’s How We Do What We Do) and AFI nominated Daniel Frederiksen (Bastard Boys, Stingers and a founding member of Red Stitch) will team up as Mr and Mrs Wormwood (Matilda’s parents).
Elise McCann (Everybody Loves Lucy, South Pacific) will star as the mild and quiet young teacher, Miss Honey.
And James Millar (Jerry Springer the Opera, Oklahoma! and writer of The Hatpin and LOVEBiTES) will take to the stage as the terrifying Miss Trunchbull, ruler of Crunchem Hall.
A full cast announcement will take place next month when Australia is introduced to the four young actresses set to tackle the title role. But can’t you just feel the magic already?
Matilda The Musical is based on Roald Dahl’s beloved novel Matilda and tells the story of an extraordinary little girl who, armed with a vivid imagination and a sharp mind, dares to take a stand and change her own destiny.
It’s not easy to be extraordinary in an ordinary world, but Matilda manages to do it – even though her parents think she’s stupid for reading books, even though her headmistress, the evil Miss Trunchbull, thinks children are the worst. Add in some intrigue, magic, and a story-within-a-story, and you have, well, a hit musical – one that honors the courageous, simple spirit of the classic book.
With a book by Dennis Kelly, and music and lyrics by beloved Australian entertainer Tim Minchin, the musical is wordy and twisty, and veers between delightfully silly and deliciously dark at surprising speeds. Wordplay is rife, full of Minchin’s trademark wit and sincerity.
Songs like ‘When I Grow Up’ and ‘My House’ are wistful odes to adulthood, childhood, and the very human complications in between, but they’re balanced with the dizzying cleverness of ‘School Song’ and the sarcastic yet still hopeful opening number ‘Miracle’. This musical really runs the gamut, and it’s never boring.
Matilda the Musical has won a plethora of theatrical awards from both London’s West End and Broadway – seven Olivier Awards (the most ever won by a musical) and five Tony Awards.
With this in mind, and this wonderful cast, all signs point towards it becoming the hottest ticket in town here in Australia.
Commissioned by the Royal Shakespeare Company, the show initially played to sold-out audiences at the Courtyard Theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon for twelve weeks from November 2010 to January 2011. It transferred to London’s West End in October 2011 where it opened to rave reviews.The Broadway production opened in 2013 and both continue to captivate audiences and play to sold-out houses.
While the Australian production is currently only on sale in Sydney via Ticketmaster until October 25, an international success such as this is likely to have a much longer life down under.
The Australian premiere season of Matilda The Musicalis proudly supported by the NSW Government through its tourism and major events agency Destination NSW.