Theatre / Interview

Sara Bareilles and Gavin Creel extend Waitress stay

Watch the pair chat about their return to the hit musical.

Following rave reviews, producers have confirmed that Sara Bareilles and Gavin Creel have extended their stay in the West End hit Waitress, and will now star in the musical for a further two weeks until Saturday 21 March 2020.

The Grammy Award-nominated Sara Bareilles is making her West End debut in the show, returning to the role of Jenna, having played the part on Broadway. Bareilles also wrote the music and lyrics for the hit musical.

She is joined by Olivier and Tony Award winner Gavin Creel in the role of Dr Pomatter, who also starred alongside Bareilles on Broadway.

Bareilles made her mark on the world of music with debut single Love Song, reaching the No.1 spot across 22 countries. She now boasts seven Grammy Award nominations, two Tony nominations and an Emmy nomination, as well as becoming a New York Times bestseller. Earlier this year she released her fifth studio album, Amidst The Chaos.

Gavin Creel received a Tony Award for his portrayal of Cornelius Hackl in Hello, Dolly!, starring alongside Bette Midler and David Hyde Pierce. In the West End, Creel originated the role of Elder Price in Book of Mormon, taking home the Olivier Award for Best Actor in a Musical. His vast theatre credits also include Thoroughly Modern Millie, Hair and La Cage Aux Folles, not forgetting starring the Broadway production of Waitress alongside Sara Bareilles.

Lucie Jones and David Hunter, who currently play Jenna and Dr Pomatter will return to the roles from the 23 March 2020.

Hit musical Waitress first opened on Broadway in April 2016 and is the first Broadway musical in history to have four women in the top four creative roles. With a book by Jessie Nelson, a score by the seven-time Grammy Award-nominated Sara Bareilles, choreography by Lorin Latarro and direction by Diane Paulus, the musical opened in the UK earlier in 2019.

On its Broadway opening, Waitress was nominated for four Outer Critics’ Circle Awards, including Outstanding New Broadway Musical; two Drama League Award Nominations, including Outstanding Production of a Broadway or Off-Broadway Musical; six Drama Desk Nominations, including Outstanding Musical; and four Tony Award Nominations, including Best Musical.

Hannah Tointon, as seen as Tara in The Inbetweeners, Violette in Mr Selfridge and Katy Fox in Hollyoaks, plays Dawn, having taken over from Laura Baldwin from 2 December 2019.

Tointon most recently starred as Zelda in The Jazz Age at the Playground Theatre.

The latest announcement comes as Sandra Marvin settles into the role of Becky, having taken over from Marisha Wallace. Marvin’s stage credits include Committee and City of Angels, as well as West End roles including as Queenie in Showboat, as Motormouth Maybelle in Hairspray, and in Porgy & Bess and Ragtime.

Joe Sugg joined the cast of the show in early September, taking over the role of Ogie from The Inbetweeners star Blake Harrison, who ended his run on Sunday 7 September 2019. The role was originated in the West End by 30 Rock‘s Jack McBrayer.

We caught up with Joe during his first week to find out more. Watch the interview below:

The Strictly Come Dancing finalist, filmmaker, author and vlogger is currently making his stage debut at the Adelphi Theatre.

Here’s what you need to know about the show:

What Is Waitress about?

Waitress tells the story of Jenna, a waitress and expert pie-maker who dreams of finding happiness, whose life gets turned upside down when a hot new doctor arrives in town.

With the help of her co-workers Becky and Dawn, Jenna overcomes the challenges she faces to discover that laughter, love and friendship provide the perfect recipe for happiness.

Who stars in Waitress?

Les Miserables and Ghost the Musical star Lucie Jones plays the role of Jenna, taking the baton from Katherine McPhee who played her on Broadway and originated the West End role earlier this year. David Hunter stars alongside as Dr Pomatter.

Sara Bareilles and Gavin Creel will step into the roles of Jenna and Dr Pomatter for a strictly limited run from until 21 March 2020.

Waitress also currently stars Sandra Marvin as Becky, Tamlyn Henderson as Earl, Joe Sugg as Ogie, Andrew Boyer as Old Joe, Stephen Leask as Cal, and Kelly Agbowu as Nurse Norma.

Laura Baldwin plays Dawn until 30 November 2019, with Hannah Tointon taking over from 2 December 2019.

The cast are joined by a full ensemble and swings.

What are the critics saying?

★★★★★ “Treat yourself to a slice of five-star musical pie – The Times
★★★★ “This show is the real deal” – Independent
★★★★ “Life-affirming & charming, Waitress is a treat” – WhatsOnStage

What can audiences expect from Waitress?

Waitress is a warm, funny and life-affirming musical about the power of friendship and individuals looking to bring about change in their lives. At its heart is not just Jenna’s struggle to escape her loveless marriage, but the intertwining lives and experiences of her friends and colleagues at the diner where she works – all of which come together in the perfect recipe for transformation and female empowerment.

It is fitting, then, that the creative team at the helm of Waitress are all women, too. And while this show is certainly buoyed by feminine ideals it isn’t strictly a woman’s show.

This isn’t a show full of heroes nor fully rounded happy endings, but it is a show that is it full of hope. It’s also full of humour, which offers a nice balance to the brittle brokenness of Jenna’s situation at home.

The mightiest pull of Waitress is, undoubtedly, Sara Bareilles’ stunning score. Full of beautiful melodies, huge ballads and big ensemble set pieces, Waitress’ score is so accomplished it’s astounding that this is Barielles’ first musical.

What else do I need to know?

Waitress is now booking at the Adelphi Theatre until 4 July 2020. The show runs for 2 hours and 45 minutes, including interval.

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