Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

You Can't Top 'Hat' What's on Editor GORDON BARR Takes a Look at Top Hat, Which Is at Sunderland Empire until Saturday

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

You Can't Top 'Hat' What's on Editor GORDON BARR Takes a Look at Top Hat, Which Is at Sunderland Empire until Saturday

Article excerpt

Byline: GORDON BARR

HIT musical Top Hat is currently wowing the crowds at Sunderland Empire.

Winner of three Olivier Awards, for Best New Musical, Best Choreography, Best Costume Design from its seven nominations it is on an epic 47-week UK tour, visiting 24 theatres nationwide and is at Sunderland Empire until this Saturday.

The world premiere stage production of Top Hat opened in the West End at the Aldwych Theatre in May 2012 where it played over 600 performances during its run of nearly two years. Prior to the West End, the production previously enjoyed a sell-out UK Tour in 2011.

Stepping into the shoes of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers in the lead roles of Jerry Travers and Dale Tremont, are Alan Burkitt and Charlotte Gooch, who both return to Top Hat having previously performed these roles in the West End.

They are joined by Clive Hayward who returns as Horace Hardwick, the role he played in the West End, Rebecca Thornhill as Madge Hardwick, Sebastien Tor- kia as Alberto Bed-d in i and John Conroy as Horace's valet Bates.

Ensemble and swing members are Lucy Ashenden, Thomas Audibert, Caroline Bateson, Sophie Camble, Matthew Caputo, Kristy Cullen, Paul Farrell, Ian Goss, Carys Gray, Alyn Hawke, Rebecca Hodge, Samuel Humphreys, Thomas Inge, Thomas-Lee Kidd, Sarah-Marie Maxwell, David McKechnie, John McManus, George Olney, Ben Palmer, Holly Rostron, Maria Ward, Amy West and Monique Young.

Top Hat is directed by Matthew White and choreographed by Bill Deamer (Olivier Award winner for Best Choreography), set designs are by Hildegard Bechtler (Olivier Award nominee for Best Set Design), costume designs by Jon Morrell (Olivier Award winner for Best Costume Design), lighting design by Peter Mumford, sound by Gareth Owen (Olivier Award nominee for Best Sound Design), new orchestrations by Chris Walker and musical supervision by Richard Balcombe.

Jerry Travers (Alan Burkitt), the famous American tap dancer, arrives in London to appear in his first West End show. …

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