Thursday, July 25

Tag: Dreamgirls

<strong>Dreamgirls – Liverpool Empire</strong>
North West

Dreamgirls – Liverpool Empire

Dreamgirls is an iconic musical, later movie musical, but it is on stage where the story really sings. The show follows the rise of the Dreamettes (later the Dreams) amidst the changing sounds of America in the swinging sixties. The trio at the musical’s heart (Effie, Deena and Lorrell) navigate these challenges, finding success, overcoming heartbreak and – ultimately – learning to love themselves and one another.  Dreamgirls premiered on Broadway in 1981, it was directed and choreographed by musical theatre legend Michael Bennett.  Thirty-five years later the show made its UK debut, opening on the West End in a new production directed and choreographed by Casey Nicholaw. This production is now on a UK tour, and we caught up with it at the Liverpool Empire. The show continues...
Dreamgirls – Winter Gardens, Blackpool
North West

Dreamgirls – Winter Gardens, Blackpool

Direct from the West End, the latest adaptation of the multi-award-winning Dreamgirls really did transport the audience into a dream-like state – a dream filled with soul, sass, a whole lot of sequins, and some truly spine-tingling singing. The story follows three soulful songstresses, The Dreams, who ride the wave of the turbulent music industry in the 1960s, as they experience the ups and downs of sex, love, fame, and the ruthlessness of the industry they all love. The trio (Effie, Lorrell and Deena) each negotiate through their own trials and tribulations, which makes for interesting parallel storytelling. Many will be familiar with the story from the 2006 film adaptation of the same name, starring Beyonce and Jennifer Hudson. Although strenuously denied by the original creato...
Samuel Nicholas talks about why Dreamgirls resonates so strongly with cast and audiences alike
Interviews

Samuel Nicholas talks about why Dreamgirls resonates so strongly with cast and audiences alike

Musical theatre has often explored the dark side of showbiz for source material, and Dreamgirls looks at the murky music industry in the 1960s as the big dreams of three women are both realised and destroyed. Effie, Denna and Lorell are the Dreams who perform songs written by Effie’s brother C.C before hooking up with devious mechanic turned manager Curtis Taylor, who is quick to exploit tensions in the group. Along the way they sing back up for flamboyant soul man Jimmy Early before Curtis’ Machiavellian plans cause all sorts of heartbreak for the trio. Samuel Nicolas is one of a strong male ensemble who do a lot of the heavy lifting in this energetic show, and he spoke to our Yorkshire Editor Paul Clarke about why Dreamgirls is resonating so strongly with both the cast and audienc...
Dreamgirls – Leeds Grand Theatre
Yorkshire & Humber

Dreamgirls – Leeds Grand Theatre

The tough world of showbiz has always been fertile ground for musical theatre and Dreamgirls puts the spotlight on the ruthless music industry. It’s a story as long as recorded music has been around when three young black women form a vocal harmony group performing in 1960s Detroit, and thanks to a ruthless manager find success before their friendship implodes as the money rolls in.  If that sounds familiar it might be based on a certain girl group who reigned supreme in the 60s as the sound of young America. Effie White has the biggest voice and attitude in The Dreams, but shy bandmate Deena has the right image that hard charging former mechanic turned manager Curtis Taylor Jr sees has the biggest potential to cross over from soul to pop. He forces the vulnerable Effie out as ...
Dreamgirls – New Wimbledon Theatre
London

Dreamgirls – New Wimbledon Theatre

Loosely based on the story of The Supremes, the multi–award winning musical Dreamgirls is back with a new UK tour. Dreamgirls tells the story of the fictional pop group Dreametts, a talented trio of black female singers from 1960s Chicago as they navigate fame, fortune, and the ruthless realities of show business, pushing their friendships to the limit. Directed and choreographed by Casey Nicholaw, the dancing was certainly a highlight of this show. From the slick quick changes to the non-stop energy of the supporting cast as they jumped and twirled across the stage, the production was extremely fast paced and kept the audience engaged throughout. The set was mostly kept minimal, except for a few changes between scenes, so the real focus was the colourful costumes. Designed by Tim Hatl...
Dreamgirls – Edinburgh Playhouse
Scotland

Dreamgirls – Edinburgh Playhouse

Effie White (Nicole Raquel Dennis), Lorrell Robinson (Paige Peddie) and Deena Jones (Natalie Kassanga) are the talented young 60s R&B group The Dreamettes. This musical charts their journey to stardom over a ten year period (subtly done through music genre and changes in costumes and wigs, by Suzanne Runciman, Danielle Bryson, Poppy Camden, Natalie Onoufriou, Lee-Ellen Wilson, Maria McLarnon, Olta Citozi, Aimee Harrison and Kirstie Lavin). It's not all singing and dancing though, with their journey including compromise, broken friendships (as seen in their name change from the Dreamettes, to The Dreams, and later Deena Jones and The Dreams) and the inherent issues of trying to make it as a black person in a white-dominated industry, aided and hindered by Dom Hartley-Harris as Curtis T...
Dreamgirls – Liverpool Empire
North West

Dreamgirls – Liverpool Empire

In its simplest form Dreamgirls is a story about dreams. It asks the question of how far people will go to get them, will they step on the dreams of others to get them. Add to this the backdrop of how people have historically stolen other people dreams in the music industry, and you have a story with depth, soul and glamour. One thing is for absolutely sure, and that is that Dreamgirls has all the ingredients to be an incredible piece of theatre; show-stopping songs, an important historical backdrop, fascinating characters, dance numbers, and Effie White. The only question you have to ask yourself is whether this production would succeed at getting the recipe right. The answer is a resounding yes. This production of Dreamgirls is without a doubt one of the best shows to come to Live...
Multi-award winning Dreamgirls announces new Blackpool dates
NEWS

Multi-award winning Dreamgirls announces new Blackpool dates

Sonia Friedman Productions is delighted to announce that the first ever UK tour of hit musical Dreamgirls, which was due to start in 2020, will head to the Opera House Blackpool for 2-weeks from Tuesday 25th October 2022 – Saturday 05th November 2022. Tickets are available from 10am, Friday 23rd April 2021 from www.wintergardensblackpool.co.uk   Featuring the classic songs ‘And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going’, ‘Listen’ and ‘One Night Only’, this sensational, multi-award winning production of Dreamgirls had its critically acclaimed West End Premiere in December 2016 at London’s Savoy Theatre, 35 years on from opening on Broadway. Meet The Dreams – Effie, Lorrell and Deena – three talented young singers in the turbulent 1960s, a revolutionary time in American music history. Jo...
Dreamgirls and Hairspray star Marisha Wallace releases her debut album
Interviews

Dreamgirls and Hairspray star Marisha Wallace releases her debut album

One of the staples of musical theatre is the rags to riches story and Marisha Wallace is living proof of that making her way from a rural farm in North Carolina to starring in the West End. Then when she was recovering from COVID-19 her home recorded version of Tomorrow went viral and Decca Records signed her to make an album.  But her first really big break came in this country after she’d just finished Something Rotten on Broadway when she was asked to understudy Effie White in the West End version of Dreamgirls. “I had five days to rehearse and go on for the role because Amber Riley had gotten pneumonia,” recalls Marisha.  “You know, usually when Effie comes out everyone goes ‘Yeah’ and my first night they go ‘oh’ as they didn’t know who I was.  I'm telling you eve...