Desi Oakley to make West End debut as Jenna in Waitress
Following the recent indisposition of Lucie Jones, as well as Jenna alternates Olivia Moore and Sarah O’Connor, American actress Desi Oakley will make her West End debut in Waitress at the Adelphi Theatre. She will join the cast from 13th January 2020, reprising her performance from the United States touring production.
Desi Oakley to join cast of Waitress
Broadway actress Desi Oakley will make her West End debut as Jenna, following her performance as Jenna in the American touring production of Waitress. Oakley’s Broadway credits include Wicked, Annie and Les Miserables, and has also played the titular character in a touring production of Evita.
Oakley joins the cast of Waitress following the news that all three actresses who play Jenna were unable to perform on 11th January 2020, which forced both performances that day to be cancelled. Audience members who had tickets to the evening performance were invited to watch the Waitress company perform songs from the musical, including “I Didn’t Plan It”, “When He Sees Me”, “Never Getting Rid of Me” and the finale version of “Opening Up”.
The current cast of Waitress stars Lucie Jones as Jenna Hunterson, Hannah Tointon as Dawn and David Hunter as Dr. Pomatter, who will appear in the production until 25th January.
The leading cast is completed by Joel Montague as Ogie, Marisha Wallace as Becky, Tamlyn Henderson as Earl, Andrew Boyer as Old Joe, Richard Taylor Woods as Cal and Rosemary Nkrumah, with Piers Bate, Cindy Belliot, Ben Morris, Olivia Moore, Nathaniel Morrison, Sarah O’Connor, Leanne Pinder, Matthew Rowland, Laura Selwood, Lucia De Wan, Mark Willshire, and Madison Worley as ensemble members.
Waitress’ creator Sara Bareilles will make her West End debut as Jenna later this month, alongside the Tony Award and Olivier Award-winning Gavin Creel as Dr. Pomatter. They will reprise their Broadway performances in the West End production of Waitress from 27th January for six weeks. Evelyn Hoskins will also join the cast as Dawn from the same date.
Based on a 2007 film by Adrienne Shelly, Waitress tells the story of Jenna Hunterson, a small-town waitress and pie maker who learns of her unexpected pregnancy to her troubled husband, Earl. Her desire to leave him grows when she falls for her gynaecologist, Dr. Pomatter, as well as entering a pie competition in the hopes of winning a cash prize. Waitress features an original score by Grammy Award-nominated artist Sara Bareilles, with songs including “She Used To Be Mine” and “The Negative”.
Waitress tickets are available now.