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Sequins, tears and laughter: Mamma Mia comes to the south

It's been a hit in more than more than 40 countries and involves lots of sequins, tears and laughter.

The musical, Mamma Mia, based around two dozen of Abba's most famous songs has arrived at the region's biggest theatre for a four-week run.

Christine Alsford went to The Mayflower to meet the stars and take a look backstage.


Youth to captivate with swash-buckling performance

Most large scale musical productions spend months in rehearsals before finally taking to the stage.

But more than 180 young people from Hampshire and beyond will be performing on the biggest and most prestigious stage in the South this weekend having put together their show from scratch in less than a fortnight.

Gilbert and Sullivan's Pirates of Penzance includes sword fights and a giant pirate ship. The cast for the Mayflower Theatre's Summer Youth Project were selected through open auditions. They work with professional directors, choreographers and musicians but are all talented amateurs aged 18 and under.


Wicked comes to the Mayflower Theatre

Emily Tierney will play Glinda in Wicked when it comes to the Mayflower Credit: Mayflower Threatre
Ashleigh Gray will play Elphaba in Wicked when it comes to the Mayflower Credit: Mayflower Theatre

Wicked, the global musical phenomenon that tells the incredible untold story of the Witches of Oz, is pleased to announce that Ashleigh Gray (Elphaba), Emily Tierney (Glinda), Samuel Edwards (Fiyero), Marilyn Cutts (Madame Morrible), Steven Pinder (The Wizard and Doctor Dillamond), Carina Gillespie (Nessarose) Richard Vincent (Boq) and Jacqueline Hughes (Standby Elphaba) will star in the record-breaking production when it comes to the Mayflower Theatre on Tuesday 21 October until Saturday 15 November 2014.

The spectacular production of “this thrillingly entertaining show” has broken countless Box Office records and already received multiple five star reviews across England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland.

The award-winning London production continues its open-ended run at the Apollo Victoria Theatre, where it is now the 10th longest running show in the West End. Around the world, Wicked has already been seen by 42 million people in 13 countries, and won 100 international awards.

In a brilliantly witty re-imagining of the stories and characters created by L. Frank Baum in ‘The Wonderful Wizard of Oz’, Wicked tells the incredible untold story of an unlikely but profound friendship between two sorcery students. Their extraordinary adventures in Oz will ultimately see them fulfil their destinies as Glinda The Good and the Wicked Witch of the West.

Wicked has music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz, a book by Winnie Holzman, musical staging by Wayne Cilento and is directed by two-time Tony Award® winner Joe Mantello. Wicked is based on the novel, ‘Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West’, by Gregory Maguire.

Official UK website:

Award-winning theatre show The Lion King is coming to town

The theatre production of Disney's The Lion King is coming to The Mayflower theatre in Southampton.

The award-winning production will play at the Mayflower from Friday 11th July 2014 and will run for 9 weeks.

The hit show is the biggest production to ever tour the UK Credit: The Mayflower Theatre

The show is the biggest production to ever tour the UK, with 23 trucks transporting hundreds of masks, puppets and more than 700 costumes.

The cast is made up of over 50 actors, singers and dancers, supported by a backstage team of more than 100 people.

Over 50 actors, singers and dancers from 18 different countries make up the cast of The Lion King Credit: The Mayflower Theatre
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