The 5th Avenue Theatre has announced the complete casting for Hairspray in Concert, featuring some of Seattle’s favorite musical theatre stars and the powerful voices of the 250-member Seattle Men’s Chorus. Celebrating the 10th anniversary of Hairspray’s 2002 Broadway debut, this unique concert event will play for six very special performances of glorious and irreverent John Waters-inspired wackiness (Friday-Sunday, June 20-23).
In 2002, Hairspray was The 5th Avenue Theatre’s first world premiere musical to head for Broadway where it won the 2003 Tony Award for Best Musical and launched The 5th’s unprecedented track record for sending new works to New York. Now the smash hit musical comes home, as audiences have never seen it before.
The cast includes Kat Ramsburg and Eric Polani Jensen as Tracy and Edna Turnblad, along with Allen Fitzpatrick, Louis Hobson, Cynthia Jones, and a host of additional Seattle stars. Also making a star turn is Jerick Hoffer as the evil Velma Von Tussle. Best known as his drag persona, Jinkx Monsoon, Hoffer is the winner of season five of RuPaul’s Drag Race and a critically acclaimed stage performer who was seen in The 5th’s production of RENT last season.
Seattle Men’s Chorus’ acclaimed vocal ensemble Captain Smartypants collectively perform a host of featured roles. Their homosexual vocal comedy is known throughout the region. They have performed all over the Pacific Northwest and beyond, thrilling, delighting and alarming audiences from Washington D.C. to San Francisco. Since their inception in 2000 Captain Smartypants has performed with Ann Wilson, Jennifer Holliday, Kelli O’Hara, Kristin Chenoweth, Melissa Manchester, American Idol finalist Blake Lewis and was Seattle’s warm-up act for Margaret Cho when she filmed The Notorious C.H.O. in 2002. Eric Lane Barnes, Flying House Productions’ Assistant Artistic Director, is their trepid leader.
“It’s been ten years since Hairspray took home eight Tony Awards, including Best Musical,” said 5th Avenue Executive Producer and Artistic Director David Armstrong. “It is our great pleasure to bring this hit back to The 5th where it began, and to let Seattle’s outstanding musical theater talent sink their teeth into these roles. We could not be more pleased to again partner with the Seattle Men’s Chorus to bring this fantastic music to life with a richness audiences have never seen.”
Kat Ramsburg returns to Seattle to take center stage as Tracy Turnblad, joined by Eric Polani Jensen and Allen Fitzpatrick as Edna and Wilbur Turnblad. Ramsburg, who has a blossoming career as a playwright and dramaturg in New York City, has performed previously at The 5th in productions of Mame, Sweeney Todd, The Wizard of Oz, and The Sound of Music. Eric Polani Jensen and Allen Fitzpatrick are also no strangers to The 5th Avenue stage. Jensen recently appeared as a member of the Quartet in The Music Man, and was a sensation as Tevye in Village Theatre’s recent production of Fiddler on the Roof. Fitzpatrick appeared most recently in The 5th’s collaboration with ACT, Grey Gardens, as well as in the holiday hit ELF. The two have appeared in dozens of productions around Puget Sound and regional houses across the country.
Jerick Hoffer is best known as his drag queen alter ego Jinkx Monsoon. He has taken the nation by storm as the winner of season five of RuPaul’s Drag Race. Hoffer is celebrated throughout Seattle not only as an astonishing drag queen, but as a talented stage performer. For Hairspray in Concert, he tackles the villainous Velma Von Tussle. He was a critically-acclaimed sensation last summer as Angel in The 5th Avenue’s production of RENT and has given astounding performances in Balagan Theatre’s Hedwig and the Angry Inch and Spring Awakening.
Louis Hobson returns to The 5th Avenue as Corny Collins. This will be his first appearance on a Seattle stage following a stint on Broadway. Hobson recently performed on Broadway as the doctor in the original cast of Next to Normal, as well as roles in Bonnie & Clyde, The People in the Picture, and Leap of Faith. Hobson has starred in many 5th Avenue productions including Miss Saigon and West Side Story, among others. He is the Artistic Director of Seattle’s Balagan Theatre.
Cynthia Jones rocks the house as Motormouth Mabel. At The 5th, she appeared previously in ELFand Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella. Other regional credits include roles at Seattle Rep, ACT Theatre, Intiman, the Goodman, Arizona Theater Company, and Benaroya hall.
A host of additional 5th Avenue favorites pack this production with enough star power to light up Seattle, including Aaron C. Finley (Link Larkin), Jessica Skerritt (Amber Von Tussle), Kirsten deLohr Helland (Penny Pingleton), Heath Saunders (Seaweed J. Stubbs), Jeff Steitzer (Spitzer), and Bobbie Kotula (Prudy Pingleton), with new-comer Camille Collaco (Little Inez.) Featured as the Dynamites are Candi Hall, Alexandria Henderson, and Sarah Russell. Filling out the cast areJordon Bolden, Sarah Rose Davis, Tori Gresham, Jimmie D. Herrod, Jr., Charlie Johnson, Matthew Steven Lawrence, Kasey Nusbickel, Isaiah Parker, Connor Russell, Patrick Shelton, Katherine Strohmaier, and Madison Willis.
Tickets (starting at $23) may be purchased through either organization. Visit www.5thavenue.org or call the Box Office at (206) 625-1900. Tickets may also be purchased at (888) 5TH-4TIX. Visit www.seattlemenschorus.org or call the Box Office at(206) 388-1400.