Michael can't wait to get back to wearing 60s frocks

~ Southern Daily Echo - 10/08/09 ~

HE is a best-selling recording artist, acclaimed TV and radio presenter and prize-winning musical Theatre star.

Now Michael Ball is to bring his Olivier Award-winning role in the 60s musical Hairspray to Southampton.

He will recreate his star turn as larger than life heroine Edna Turnblad at The Mayflower theatre between May 11 and 29 as the show goes on its first UK tour.

The Love Changes Everything singer has previously starred in Les Miserables, Phantom Of The Opera and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

Ball, 47, told the Daily Echo: “I knew when I originally took on the part of Edna that she was going to be a big part of my life, in every way, but I never realised just how big. “Hairspray is truly one of the greatest experiences of my career and a chance to have just a few more nights in those frocks was an opportunity I couldn't miss.”

Dennis Hall, The Mayflower's chief executive, added, “I am delighted that we are able to bring this exciting West End production along with its star, Michael Ball, to the people of the south next year.

“It is a huge coup for The Mayflower to present a show of this calibre, and it truly validates the investment we are making in improving the theatre's facilities for the years to come.”

The show is set in the US in 1962. Ball's character Edna is the mother of Tracy Turnblad, a big girl with big hair and an even bigger heart who has only one passion – dancing.

She wins a spot on the local TV dance programme The Corny Collins Show and is transformed overnight from outsider to teen celebrity.

But can she get her shy mother out of the apartment and beat evil Amber to be crowned Miss Hairspray?

The London production was nominated for a record 11 Olivier Awards, winning best new musical and three other categories including Ball's best actor in a musical.

Tickets for the show at The Mayflower go on sale today.


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