Ian Talbot takes over the role of Wilbur Turnblad in Hairspray from 28 Jan 2008

Ian Talbot takes over the role of Wilbur Turnblad in Hairspray from 28 Jan 2008

Ian Talbot will take over the role of 'Wilbur Turnblad' in Hairspray at the Shaftesbury Theatre from 28 Jan 2008. (He replaces Mel Smith).

Michael Ball (Edna Turnblad), Leanne Jones (Tracy Turnblad) & Ben James-Ellis (Link Larkin) continue in their roles to 25 Oct 2008.

Ian Talbot, who ran the New Shakespeare Company at the Open Air Theatre Regent’s Park for 20 years until last year, has performed frequently in the West End and at the Royal Shakespeare Company. His television includes “As Time Goes By”, “Heartbeat”, “Poirot” and “Midsomer Murders”. He directed over twenty productions at Regent’s Park, and also starred in several of them. He was awarded an OBE in this year’s New Years Honours list.

Hairspray, which is currently selling tickets to 4 April 2009, opened at the Shaftesbury Theatre to terrific notices from the popular press on 30 Oct 2007, following previews from 11 Oct: THE INDEPENDENT says, "Was the show worth it? Yes, yes and again yes." THE GUARDIAN says, "Where the show really scores is in its ability to integrate serious issues into a lightweight plot." THE DAILY TELEGRAPH says, "You will laugh, you will scream, you might even shed a sentimental tear or two. " THE TIMES says, "Delightful."

Hairspray has book by Mark O’Donnell & Thomas Meehan, music by Marc Shaiman, lyrics by Scott Wittman & Marc Shaiman, and is based upon the New Line Cinema film written and directed by John Waters.

It is directed by Jack O’Brien, choreographed by Jerry Mitchell, and produced in the West End by Stage Entertainment / SEL & GFO New Line Cinema / In Association With Live Nation

Baltimore's Tracy Turnblad, a big girl with big hair and an even bigger heart, has only one passion -- to dance. She wins a spot on the local TV dance programme, 'The Corny Collins Show' and, overnight, is transformed from outsider to irrepressible teen celebrity. But can a trendsetter in dance and fashion vanquish the program's reigning princess, win the heart of heartthrob Link Larkin, and integrate a television show?

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