Guys and Dolls star Simon Lipkin joined the cast of Broadway spoof musical Disaster! as rehearsals began this week ahead of the show’s London premiere at the Charing Cross Theatre this weekend.
The two gala concert performances of the show, which takes its inspiration from the star-studded disaster movie genre which dominated cinema screens in the 1970s, will also feature the show’s creator Seth Rudetsky and actress Jennifer Simard who is re-creating her Tony-nominated role of the gambling addicted nun Sister Mary Downy.
Announcing the arrival of Lipkin who will play the deceitful owner of a floating casino and disco heading for multiple disasters, Rudetsky said: “We love our newest cast member, Simon Lipkin. How dare he be so young and so talented!
“Director Jack Plotnick and I are so thrilled with all our Disaster! actors. When we came to Broadway, there was a very nice buzz about the show having an all-star cast. We can’t believe we’re now lucky enough to get an all-star British cast for the West End version! And we are so blown away by so many things: the warmth of everyone involved, the incredible creativity/hilarity they’re showing in rehearsal, the crazy amazing singing voices, and the unbelievable work ethic.”
Written by Rudetsky and Plotnick, the London performances of Disaster! on 20 November at 4pm and 7.30pm will raise funds for The Make A Difference Trust.
The London cast includes: Oliver Tompsett (We Will Rock You, Wicked); Sally Ann Triplett (The Last Ship, Mamma Mia!); Jodie Jacobs (Rock of Ages, 27); Alice Fearn (Wicked, Into the Woods); Sandra Marvin (Stepping Out, Show Boat); and Bradley Riches (Godspell, Annie Jr).
The cast is completed by Mark Anderson (as Scott), Paul Grunbert (Maury), Ruthie Stephens (wealthy woman), Chris Warner (Jake), Rachel Grundy, Hayley Jones, Sam Lathwood, Will Luckett, Anthony Starr and Katie Warsop (all ensemble).
Set in 1979, Disaster! gathers together a group of New York’s hottest A-listers at the opening of a floating casino and discotheque. What begins as a night of boogie fever quickly changes to panic as the ship succumbs to multiple disasters, including earthquakes, tidal waves and infernos and even an attack by killer rats.
The jukebox style music consists of 1970s dancefloor hits including ‘I Will Survive’, ‘Knock On Wood’, ‘Hooked On a Feeling’, ‘Sky High’ ‘I Am Woman’ and ‘Hot Stuff’.
The Charing Cross shows are presented by Theatre MAD and Making Productions.