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Are You Ready for Hairspray? Really Ready?

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(center) Niki Metcalf as “Tracy Turnblad” and the Company of Hairspray. Photo: Jeremy Daniel.

Are You Ready for Hairspray? Really Ready? Broadway’s Tony Award®-winning musical comedy phenomenon is in Los Angeles. This new North American tour, helmed by original director Jack O’Brien and original choreographer Jerry Mitchell, will play for five weeks in Southern California — Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa from April 18 – April 30, 2023, followed by Dolby Theatre presented by Broadway in Hollywood in Los Angeles May 2 – 21, 2023. Tickets are on sale now for the Dolby Theatre and available at www.BroadwayinHollywood.com, www.Ticketmaster.com, by phone at (800) 982-2787, or in person at The Dolby Theatre Box Office. Tickets for Segerstrom Center for the Arts are available at www.scfta.org and by phone at 1-714-556-2787.

“Welcome to the 60s” – (from L) Andrew Levitt (aka Nina West) as “Edna Turnblad,” Niki Metcalf as “Tracy Turnblad” and Company in Hairspray.  Photo: Jeremy Daniel.

The cast will be led by Andrew Levitt aka Nina West (from “RuPaul’s Drag Race”) as Edna Turnblad and Niki Metcalf as Tracy Turnblad. Joining them are Charlie Bryant III as Seaweed J. Stubbs, Nick Cortazzo as Link Larkin, Ralph Prentice Daniel as Wilbur Turnblad, Billy Dawson as Corny Collins,

Ryahn Evers as Amber Von Tussle, Addison Garner as Velma Von Tussle, Emery Henderson as Penny Pingleton, and Joi D. McCoy as Little Inez.

“It’s a brand-new world we find ourselves in today, and HAIRSPRAY is even more relevant than twenty years ago when it first burst onto the scene. With the renewed, refreshed energy of the unforgettable “Nina West” as Edna and a whole new generation of wildly talented kids across the board, we cannot wait to raise the various roofs once more with dance, joy, music, and that glorious, famous, energy-packed score!” shared Director Jack O’Brien.

Choreographer Jerry Mitchell added, “HAIRSPRAY has always been about all of us dancing together! I am thrilled to welcome this NEW company of amazing #FULLOUT talents to lead the way as we dance across America with a message of inclusion and hope because ‘You Really Can’t Stop the Beat!’”

HAIRSPRAY is the story of 16-year-old Tracy Turnblad in 1960s Baltimore as she sets out to dance her way onto TV’s most popular show. Can a girl with big dreams (and even bigger hair) change the world? Featuring the beloved score of hit songs including “Welcome to the ’60s,” “Good Morning Baltimore,” and “You Can’t Stop the Beat,” HAIRSPRAY is “fresh, winning, and deliriously tuneful!” (The New York Times).

Finale – (center) Andrew Levitt (aka Nina West) as “Edna Turnblad” and Company in Hairspray.  Photo: Jeremy Daniel.

This new touring production reunites Broadway’s award-winning creative team, led by Director Jack O’Brien and Choreographer Jerry Mitchell, to bring HAIRSPRAY to a new generation of theater audiences. HAIRSPRAY is based on the New Line Cinema film written and directed by John Waters, who served as a creative consultant on the musical comedy. It features a book by Mark O’Donnell and Thomas Meehan. HAIRSPRAY features an original score by Academy Award-nominated Marc Shaiman and lyrics by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman. The tour is produced by NETworks Presentations.

The additional creative team for HAIRSPRAY includes Tour Director Matt Lenz, Tour Choreographer Robbie Roby, Set Designer David Rockwell, Lighting Designer Kenneth Posner, Tour Lighting Designer Paul Miller, Costume Designer William Ivey Long, Hair and Wig Designer Paul Huntley, Richard Mawbey and Bernie Ardia, Sound Designer Shannon Slaton, Music Supervisor Keith Thompson, and Casting by Stewart/Whitley.

HAIRSPRAY premiered at Seattle’s 5th Avenue Theater in June 2002. The show was a smash hit when it transferred to Broadway, winning eight 2003 Tony Awards including Best Musical, and became the longest-running musical to play at the Neil Simon Theater, running 2,642 performances from July 18, 2002, until January 4, 2009. It is the 22nd longest-running show in Broadway history.

The ensemble consists of Sydney Archibald, Kelly Barberito, Tommy Betz, Helene Britany, Caroline Eiseman, Melanie Puente Ervin, Craig First, Alex Fullerton, Annie Gagen, Carly Haig, Lauren Johnson, Sabrina Joseph, Greg Kalafatas, Kyle Kavully, Matthew J. Kelly, McLaine Meachem, Faith Northcutt, Nicholas Dion Reese, Sage, Micah Sauvageau, Clint Maddox Thompson, Jade Turner, Mickey White, and Emmanuelle Zeesman. Casting for the role of Motormouth Maybelle will be announced at a later date.

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