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'Billy Elliot: The Musical' Taps onto Playhouse Stage

July 11, 2017 10:07 AM

'Billy Elliot: The Musical' taps its way onto the Duluth Playhouse Stage this week. Marketing Director for the Playhouse Ashlee Hartwig sat down with us for a preview.

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The Tony Award-winning musical follows the inspirational journey of a young boy named Billy. He stumbles out of a boxing ring and ends up in a ballet class, where he discovers his true passion. During his journey, he faces prejudice of living in a working class and mining community. He also faces obstacles with his family, including coping with the death of his mother. All this happens in the backdrop of the 1984 miners' strike with Margaret Thatcher as Prime Minister in the U.K.

Throughout the show, there are plenty of fantastic dance, tap and ensemble numbers. To add, the music is written by none other than Elton John, with lyrics by English playwright Lee Hall.

As for the cast, there are 30 members in total. The age of the large group ranges from 8 years old all the way to adult performers. Hartwig explains that they mesh well together, despite the varying ages.

"The camaraderie between them - it's palpable, it's great," she said.

One instance of great chemistry in the cast is the mother-son relationship of Mrs. Wilkinson and Billy Elliot. The two are actually played by a real life mother-son duo in Jennifer Madill Hagen and her son, Tanner. Jennifer is a veteran of the Playhouse stage, performing in multiple productions. Tanner, however, will be making his main stage debut as Billy.

"Tickets are gonna fly out the window," Hartwig exclaimed.

Click here to get your tickets to Billy Elliot: The Musical.


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