Show­time lets the good times roll

The Herald (South Africa) - - LEISURE - Her­ald Correspondent

CON­CUR­RENT with the an­nounce­ment of the cast for the 2018 Show­time Theatre Awards and re­vue this week, ex­ec­u­tive pro­ducer Bob Eveleigh has an­nounced that the pop­u­lar event now also has a new nam­ing rights spon­sor.

Next year’s 28th pro­duc­tion will be known as the Wood­lands Dairy First Choice Show­time Awards and Re­vue, and will be backed by the Eastern Cape com­pany based in Hu­mans­dorp.

It is the first time the com­pany will be spread­ing its wings into the arts and cul­ture area.

The an­nual young ta­lent de­vel­op­ment mu­si­cal com­edy re­vue will carry the ti­tle Let the Good Times Roll and will salute the 1950s, a decade known as the bright­est in US show­biz his­tory, in­clud­ing num­bers made fa­mous by such stars as Teresa Brewer, Patti Page, Doris Day, Con­nie Fran­cis, Bing Crosby, Frank Si­na­tra, Elvis Pres­ley and many oth­ers.

The Broadway and Hol­ly­wood hits to be saluted in­clude Sin­gin’ in the Rain, The Band­wagon, My Fair Lady, The Pa­jama Game, West Side Story and Bye Bye Birdie, a 1960s suc­cess that will also be fea­tured.

The pe­riod also saw the ini­tial birth of rock ‘n roll with such stars as Bill Ha­ley and the Comets, Fats Domino, Buddy Holly, and Pres­ley, and fea­tured the start of Frank Si­na­tra’s amaz­ing sec­ond rise to fame, while the com­edy gems come from the one-lin­ers of the likes of ‘50s head­lin­ers Bob Hope, Dean Martin, Jerry Lewis, Sammy Davis Ju­nior, Grou­cho Marx and Phyl­lis Diller.

With an over­all av­er­age age of 17 years, the fe­male mem­bers of the com­pany re­turn­ing from last year will be singer-dancers Abi Ran­well, Kayla Mathiesen and Skye Phillips, plus singer Kyla Smit, along with dancers Kayla Auld and Ma-Bell Muller.

New­com­ers are singer-dancers Abby Met­zler and Danielle Viljoen, along with singers Kristin Labuschagne and Carli Roberts, plus new dancers Kayla Ja­cobs and Me­landi Marais.

The males are James van der Merwe, seen in the past two Show­time re­vues, and new­com­ers Jonathan Hughes and Sikho Gaika.

The special guest stars at this stage are Arthur Daniels (also back from 2017) and Ser­ena Es­cola, with one new more ma­ture fe­male star still to be added.

Ma-Bell Muller, Me­landi Marais and Sikho Gaika are, how­ever, also re­turn­ing Show­timers, hav­ing all been seen in the 2014 Gersh­win salute, ‘S Won­der­ful, ‘S Marvel­lous.

The main cast will again be sup­ported by a group of 10 pupils from Charlo Pri­mary, still to be se­lected by mu­si­cal di­rec­tor Wayne Hughes.

Re­hearsals will start in the school holidays in Oc­to­ber, and con­tinue over all sub­se­quent Satur­day morn­ings and week­end af­ter­noons un­til De­cem­ber 2 and 3, and then cease be­fore re­sum­ing on Jan­uary 2 next year.

The re­vue is de­vised and writ­ten by Eveleigh, who cre­ated the Show­time con­cept 27 years ago.

He is once more joined by the 2017 A Grand Night for Singing main show pro­duc­tion team of Mar­lene Pi­eterse, Siob­han Day and Hughes. Lance Bright and Rocky Mann once again func­tion as tech­ni­cal con­sul­tants.

Let the Good Times Roll will, as was the case over the past two years, be pre­sented in col­lab­o­ra­tion with the PE Mu­si­cal and Dra­matic So­ci­ety (Pe­mads). It will run in the Lit­tle Theatre from Jan­uary 22 to 27.

The Ju­nior Wood­lands Dairy First Choice Awards Cer­e­monies, for pri­mary and high school pro­duc­tions, will take place on Jan­uary 23 and the main awards on Jan­uary 26.

Pic­ture: CHRIS GERTSCH

MU­SI­CALLY MINDED: Show­time’s pro­duc­tion team in­cludes, from left, pro­duc­tion sec­re­tary Gwen Davis, pro­ducer and di­rec­tor's assistant Brenda Ower, di­rec­tor's men­tor Mar­lene Pi­eterse, di­rec­tor and chore­og­ra­pher Siob­han Day, and mu­si­cal and vo­cal di­rec­tor Wayne Hughes

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