It was announced today that Ben Mingay and Amanda Harrison will lead the cast of An Officer and a Gentleman in the world premiere production at Sydney’s Lyric Theatre, 2012.
Mingay, currently starring as Tommy De Vito in Jersey Boys, has won the leading role of Naval Officer Zack Mayo (played by Richard Gere in the film on which the musical is based). Amanda Harrison, best known for originating the role of Elphaba in Australia’s production of Wicked, will star as Paula Pokrifki, a factory worker who dreams of becoming a nurse and making a better life.
Also announced today were the supporting principal roles of Sid Worley, the class “superstar” at the Naval Academy and Lynette Pomeroy, Paula’s best friend. The role of Sid will created by WAAPA graduate Alex Rathgaber (The Drowsy Chaperone, Fiddler On The Roof) and Lynette will be originated by Kate Kendall (MTC’s Next To Normal).
Producers Frost and Cooper Cohen are said to be delighted with their lead cast members, chosen from the hundreds of talented Australian actors who auditioned for the creative team earlier this year.
“Ben and Amanda will be sensational in the lead roles, and when Kate and Alex took part in the recent workshop I knew they were perfect for the roles of Lynette and Sid. I’m thrilled we have found the ideal cast”, said Frost.
Details of the ensemble cast will be released at a later date.
Based on Academy Award winning film, this production has been adapted for the stage by the film’s original screen writer Douglas Day Stewart and co-producer Sharleen Cooper Cohen. The score will feature the iconic song “Love Lifts Us Up Where We Belong” as well as an original score, composed by Kenny Hirsch and Robin Lerner.
An Officer and a Gentleman will be produced by John Frost and Sharleen Cooper Cohen, directed by Simon Phillips (Love Never Dies, Priscilla), choreographed by Andrew Hallsworth and musically directed by Dave Skelton.
The NSW Minister for Tourism, Major Events and the Arts, George Souris said in a media statement:
“The NSW Government though Destination NSW is pleased to support another world premiere musical to be produced in the harbour city of Sydney. An Officer and A Gentleman is an exciting addition to the State’s events calendar, enhancing Sydney’s pre-eminent position as the city for first run stage productions in Australia. Like many others, I am looking forward to being in the audience when this wonderful production opens next year.”
The production will begin at the Lyric Theatre, Sydney on 19 May, 2012.
AussieTheatre.com will post a full feature of the Sydney launch later this week.