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News Release- Issued by York Stage Musicals

York Stage Musicals Present: ‘Sister Act The Musical’

(as part of their ‘independent woman’ season)
Friday 12th-Saturday 20th September 2014

A fabulously divine musical telling the story of the sassy diva Deloris Van Cartier and her bunch of singing nuns, ‘Sister Act’ makes its York premiere at the Grand Opera House, York from September 12th-20th 2014.

SISTER ACT tells the hilarious story of Deloris Van Cartier, a wannabe diva, whose life takes a surprising turn when she witnesses a crime and the police hide her in the last place anyone would think to look—a convent! Under the suspicious watch of Mother Superior, Deloris helps her fellow sisters find their voices as she unexpectedly rediscovers her own. A sparkling tribute to the universal power of friendship and girl power!

Based on the award winning 1992 film starring Whoopi Goldberg, ‘Sister Act; The Musical’ is fun for all the family aged 10 upwards, with a brand new 70’s inspired score by Alan Menken (Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, Little Mermaid, Aladdin and Little Shop of Horrors’).

Heading up the cast, in the vocally demanding role of Deloris, is BBC 1’s ‘I’d Do Anything’ finalist Cleopatra Rey. Cleo has had many roles in West End and off West End musicals including Elizabeth in ‘Dirty Dancing’, she was also hailed as ‘one of the best voices in the industry…’ by performer Brian Conely when they worked together in ‘Brother Loves Travelling Salvation Show’ directed by Strictly Come Dancing’s Craig Revel Horwood.

Cleo says, of being part of the show,

“I am so excited to be working with a community cast who give up so much of their spare time and are so committed to this show. As someone who knows how much work goes into creating and performing a role night after night as a full time career, it’s an honour to work with people with so much drive and determination who do this as a hobby and are so talented too… I can promise this show will be ‘Fabulous, Baby!’”

Other familiar faces in this cast are Julie-Anne Smith as the stern Mother Superior most recently seen in YSM’s ‘Annie’ back in May, newcomer to YSM but no stranger to the professional stage Joanne Theaker as the timid Sister Mary Robert and YSM favourites Alicia Roberts as Sister Mary Patrick and Sandy Nicholson as Mary Lazarus.

Mikhail Lim as Officer Lieutenant Eddie Souther, York regular Martin Rowley as Monsignor O’Hara, Joe Wawrzyniak as bad guy Curtis Jackson and his goons played by Stuart Rey as Joey, Alex Dunn as TJ and Ashley Standland as Hispanic lothario Pablo, who most recently appeared as the title role in YSM’s Phantom of the Opera back in February.

The production team is headed up by Nik Briggs, with this being his first major show since taking over as Artistic Director from Robert Readman last year.

Briggs says:

“Sister Act is such an exciting show, people already know and love the story that was made famous by Whoopi Goldberg and Maggie Smith in the early 90’s. What the producers and writers have done is to evolve it to the next level. All the numbers are fantastic, from the toe tapping disco numbers to the soulful ballads with a stop off at a Bee Gees and Drifters inspired songs, this show really does have it all…. And just wait for the glittering finale!”

Alongside Nik on the production team is Musical Director Stephen Hackshaw and York Theatre Royal Panto favourite, AJ Powell as choreographer.

AJ says of working with YSM

“It has been a pleasure to work with a company of such a professional standard, I feel very lucky to have been introduced to them and cannot believe the amount of hard work they have put into this show, it is definitely going to be spectacular”.

The wardrobe department is overseen by York designer Jo Keogh, who people from the city will know from the York Mystery Plays 2012, Blood and Chocolate and YSM’s Phantom of the Opera amongst many other credits. She is joined by her wonderful team of volunteers and is also working in conjunction with Dress Cirlce of York whom she says have been ‘absolutely marvellous’.


Notes to editors and listings information:

Listings information:

Sister Act: The Musical
Book by: Bill & Cheri Steinkeller
Music By: Alan Menken
Lyrics By: Glenn Slater
Date: Friday 12-Saturday 20th September 2014
Directed by Nik Briggs
Chreography by AJ Powell
Musical Direction by Stephen Hackshaw
Based on the Touch Stone Pictures motion picture “Sister Act” written by Joseph Howard
Set design by: UK Production
Costumes by Jo Keogh and Dress Circle of York
Tickets: £25.90 - £13.90 (plus booking fee)
Booking: Box Office: Tel: 0844 871 3024 or online
Location: Main House