Excitement is building for the world premiere of THE BAND which opens its UK tour at Manchester Opera House next month.

It is now just four weeks until the hotly-anticipated new musical – penned by award-winning playwright Tim Firth and featuring the music of Take That – takes to the stage in front of audiences for the first time.

The show begins in Manchester on Friday 8 September, with national press night on Tuesday 26 September.

THE BAND is a new musical about what it’s like to grow up with a boyband.  For five 16-year-old friends in 1992, ‘the band’ is everything. Twenty-five years on, we are reunited with the group of friends, now 40-something women, as they try once more to fulfil their dream of meeting their heroes.

The Band is being played by young stars AJ Bentley, Nick Carsberg, Curtis T Johns, Yazdan Qafouri and Sario Solomon, who, as Five to Five, won BBC’s Let It Shine.

Playing the parts of Rachel and Young Rachel will be Rachel Lumberg and Faye Christall respectively. They are joined by Emily Joyce as Heather, Alison Fitzjohn as Claire, Jayne McKenna as Zoe, Katy Clayton as Young Heather, Sarah Kate Howarth as Young Claire, Lauren Jacobs as Young Zoe, Rachelle Diedericks as Debbie, Martin Miller as Jeff and Andy Williams as Dave.

Rachel Lumberg’s most recent tours include Tim Firth’s This Is My Family and Calendar Girls, The Full Monty and Dandy DickFaye Christall’s theatre credits include Broken Biscuits (Paines Plough), Gone Viral (St James Theatre) and One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (Edinburgh Fringe Festival). She is also part of the Cirque Du Soleil Company.

Emily Joyce’s television credits include series regulars Jill in My Almost Famous Family, Sarah Fletcher in Mutual Friends and Janet Dawkins in My Hero.  Her most recent theatre includes Judy in the West End production of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time.

Alison Fitzjohn has just finished as assistant director and performer in the tour of David Walliams’ Gangsta Granny.  She also played The Queen of Hearts/Duchess in the Olivier-nominated immersive production of Alice’s Adventures Underground by Les Enfants Terribles.  Over the past 12 years, Alison has performed all over the world in Horrible Histories, Barmy Britain and Horrible Science.

Jayne McKenna’s recent theatre credits include Rose Naracott in War Horse in the West End, Sylvia in This Happy Breed for the Peter Hall Company, Lily Gibb in Men Should Weep at the National and Lady Macbeth in Macbeth at the Northcott Theatre.  She also appeared in the film version of the National Theatre’s production of London Road as Imelda.

Katy Clayton made her first TV appearance at the age of six on Coronation Street.  She appeared in various TV shows such as Casualty, Shameless and Waterloo Road and played series regular Samantha Booth in Where the Heart Is for four years.  Sarah Kate Howarth’s theatre credits include Copycat (Southwark Playhouse), Whistle Down the Wind (Union Theatre), Tess of the D’Urbervilles (New Wimbledon Theatre) and Spring Awakening (Edinburgh Fringe).  Lauren Jacobs and Rachelle Diedericks will be making their professional debuts in THE BAND.

Martin Miller’s recent theatre includes Antonio in The Revenger’s Tragedy and Keith Haines in Darkness, both for Nottingham Playhouse, two UK tours of The Full Monty as Dave, and Alfred Hitchcock in The Lovesong of Alfred J Hitchcock (Leicester Curve, UK Tour and Brits Off Broadway).  Andy Williams’ recent theatre credits include Arnold in Hir (Bush Theatre), Giles/Captain in Emma Rice’s production of Rebecca (Plymouth Theatre Royal/Tour), The 39 Steps (Criterion Theatre), Ted Narracott in War Horse (New London Theatre) and Albert/Fred/Stephen in Kneehigh Theatre’s Brief Encounter.

THE BAND is directed by Kim Gavin and Jack Ryder, designed by Jon Bausor and choreographed by Kim Gavin, with lighting design by Patrick Woodroffe, video design by Luke Halls and sound design by Terry Jardine and Nick Lidster.

THE BAND is produced by David Pugh & Dafydd Rogers and Gary Barlow, Howard Donald, Mark Owen and Robbie Williams.

 

Website – www.thebandmusical.com

Twitter – @TheBandMusical

Instagram – BandMusical

Facebook – /TheBandMusical

 

LISTING INFORMATION

THE BAND

MANCHESTER OPERA HOUSE

8 September 2017 – 30 September 2017

Mon – Thu 7.30pm | Fri 8:30pm | Sat 2.30pm & 7:30pm (No matinee on Sat 9 Sep)

 

HOW TO BOOK

Online: atgtickets.com/Manchester

Box Office: 0844 871 3018*

*fees apply.

 

Pictures Dave the Pap/Papino News