Caroline O’Connor, Marina Prior, Samantha Dodemaide and Erin Clare have been entrusted with the much-loved lead roles in Dolly Parton’s 9 To 5 The Musical. Direct from London’s West End, the hilarious smash-hit musical will have its Australian Premiere at the Sydney Lyric Theatre in April 2020.
Marina Prior will play Violet Newstead, a smart, sassy and efficient woman who has worked all her life at Consolidated Industries. She has all it takes to run the company but there is one small issue … her boss! Marina gained prominence as Cosette in the Australian premiere of Les Misérables and Christine Daae in The Phantom of the Opera, and has grown to become one of Australia’s favourite leading ladies, playing lead roles in The Sound of Music, Mary Poppins, The Secret Garden and countless other productions.
Samantha Dodemaide will be Judy Bernly, a newly separated, never worked before young woman who finds more than just a job at Consolidated Industries. Samantha came to the fore playing Dorothy in the national tour of the London Palladium production of The Wizard of Oz. Her career also includes roles in Chicago, Evita, Anything Goes, Sweet Charity and Singin’ In The Rain amongst others.
Doralee Rhodes is a ‘don’t mess with me’ well-brought-up, bright and beautiful country gal. She may look like a push over but is anything but! The role will be played by Erin Clare whose first starring role was as Scaramouche in The Gordon Frost Organisation’s national tour of We Will Rock You. She has also featured in Heathers the Musical, American Psycho, High Fidelity and American Idiot.
Caroline O’Connor will portray the comical Roz Keith, the administration assistant who is fiercely – and unrequitedly – in love with her boss Franklin Hart Jnr. Currently performing in Melbourne Theatre Company’s Kiss of the Spiderwoman, Caroline has played lead roles on Broadway, in the West End, France and across Australia, including Chicago, Anything Goes, West Side Story and Anastasia to name just a few.
Producers John Frost, Suzanne Jones and Ambassador Theatre Group Productions are thrilled with their all-star lead cast. “We are so excited to cast four of the best musical theatre performers in Australia to play these iconic roles,” said John Frost.
“The international creative team found four luminous stars who are a perfect fit for their roles and will bring the same energy to our show that cemented the current West End production as a genuine hit,” said Suzanne Jones. “Australian audiences will love this upbeat, fun and entertaining production that is full of Dolly Parton’s fantastic music including the iconic title song, 9 to 5.”
9 To 5 The Musical tells the story of Doralee, Violet and Judy, three workmates pushed to boiling point by their sexist and egotistical boss Franklin Hart Jnr. Concocting a plan to kidnap and turn the tables on their despicable supervisor, will the ladies manage to reform their office – or will events unravel when the CEO pays an unexpected visit?
This run-away success on the West End features a book by the iconic movie’s original screenwriter Patricia Resnick and an Oscar, Grammy and Tony award-nominated score by the Queen of Country herself, Dolly Parton including her much-loved hit song, 9 to 5!
9 To 5 The Musical is written by Patricia Resnick, with music and lyrics by Dolly Parton. It is directed by Jeff Calhoun, choreography by Lisa Stevens, design by Tom Rogers, lighting design by Howard Hudson, sound design by Poti Martin, video design by Nina Dunn, original arrangements by Stephen Oremus and Alex Lacamoire, original Broadway orchestrations by Bruce Coughlin, musical supervisor, reductions and extra arrangements by Mark Crossland, musical direction by Andrew Hilton and casting by Victoria Roe.
Image: Erin Clare, Marina Prior, Samantha Dodemaide and Caroline O’Connor to star in 9 To 5 The Musical – photo by Peter Brew-Bevan