Michael Ball leads Mack and Mabel at Chichester and on tour

Michael Ball (2) 2014 photo by Joel Anderson

Michael Ball will lead the cast of the Chichester Festival Theatre production of Mack and Mabel in July. Picture Joel Anderson

Michael Ball returns to Chichester this summer in a major new production of Mack and Mabel, directed by Jonathan Church, which opens at the Festival Theatre in July (press night is 21 July), followed by a UK tour from 1 October to 6 December.

Based on the true romance between Hollywood legends Mack Sennett and Mabel Normand, this musical comedy (book by Michael Stewart, music and lyrics by Jerry Herman) received eight Tony Award nominations when it opened on Broadway in 1974.

Michael Ball plays Mack Sennett. Recent credits include the BBC television drama That Day We Sang, which reunited him with Sweeney Todd co-star Imelda Staunton. Theatre credits include the title role in Sweeney Todd (Chichester’s Festival 2011 and West End), Hairspray, Les Misérables, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Passion, Aspects of Love, The Woman in White and The Phantom of the Opera. Ball co-produced Chichester Festival 2010’s West End transfer of Love Story. He also has a successful recording and broadcasting career, and will be embarking on a UK concert tour in spring 2015.

Further casting is to be announced.

The production is directed by Jonathan Church, Chichester’s artistic director. Chichester credits include Festival 2014’s Taken At Midnight (also West End) and Amadeus, The Last Confession (Toronto, Los Angeles and Australia tour), Singin’ in the Rain (also West End and tour), The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui (also West End) and The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby (also West End). Other credits include Of Mice and Men (West End and tour) and The Witches (West End and tour).

Choreography is by Stephen Mear, Chichester’s associate choreographer. Chichester credits include Festival 2014’s Gypsy (which transfers to the West End in March 2015), and Amadeus, as well as The Pajama Game (also West End) and Kiss Me, Kate (also The Old Vic). Other credits include West End productions of Shoes, Mary Poppins, Hello, Dolly!, Crazy For You and Anything Goes (National Theatre and West End).

Design is by Robert Jones whose Chichester credits include Festival 2014’s Taken At Midnight (also West End), Kiss Me, Kate (also Old Vic) and Calendar Girls (also UK tour, Australia and Canada). Other credits include West End productions of A Chorus of Disapproval and Much Ado About Nothing.

Mack and Mabel will be at the Festival Theatre, Chichester from 13 July to 5 September. Further information, including booking dates and ticket prices, will be announced at the end of February.

Full details of Festival 2015 will be announced at the end of February.

Visit www.cft.org.uk or contact the box office on 01243 781312 for more details.

Readers may also be interested in:

InterviewMichael Ball chats about his new album and musical theatre challenges

Choreographer Stephen Mear reveals all about Gypsy – Interview – Parts One and Two

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