Right: Natalie Bassingthwaighte, Casey Donovan, and Alinta Chidzey. Photo by Peter Brew-Bevan
Produced in Australia by John Frost and Suzanne Jones, this Australian production will premiere at Sydney’s Capitol Theatre in August before coming to Brisbane at QPAC’s Lyric Theatre in November and followed by a season at the State Theatre, Arts Centre Melbourne in December.
Starring as Roxie Hart is Natalie Bassingthwaighte and joining her as Velma Kelly is musical theatre star Alinta Chidzey. Casey Donovan joins the duo as prison warden Matron ‘Mama’ Morton.
QPAC Chief Executive John Kotzas said he was pleased to welcome John Frost and Suzanne Jones to present Chicago again.
“This show holds a very special place in QPAC’s history; it has been more than 10 years since our last presentation of Chicago, with that season opening our then newly refurbished Lyric Theatre in 2009,” Mr Kotzas said.
“Our audiences love great musical theatre, and they are certainly in for a treat with this all-new production and its stellar cast.”
Natalie Bassingthwaighte has developed a rich career as an actor, musician and TV presenter. The multiple Logie Award nominee has vast acting credits in film and on television including her successful run on Neighbours as Izzy Hoyland. Natalie was the host of So You Think You Can Dance and a judge on The X Factor in both Australia and New Zealand. As the front woman for Australian pop dance group The Rogue Traders she went on to dominate the pop music charts before she also released her solo album which debuted at Number 1 on the ARIA charts. She turns full circle returning to the stage after commencing her career in musical theatre productions such as Rent, Grease and Footloose.
Joining Natalie is Alinta Chidzey in the role of Velma Kelly. Alinta has forged a most successful career in entertainment from her acting credits in Wentworth, Neighbours and Winners and Losers to her album releases as a Jazz vocalist and songwriter. She has most notably earned her position as one of Australia’s true leading ladies of the musical theatre stage having performed as Anita in West Side Story, Mary Magdalene in Jesus Christ Superstar, Kathy Selden in Singin’ In the Rain, Magnolia in Show Boat and joined Hugh Jackman on stage in his Broadway to Oz tour.
Playing Matron ‘Mama’ Morton is Casey Donovan. She is best known to Australian audiences after winning Australian Idol as a 16 year old in 2004. Since then Casey has flourished into a most in demand performer. She continues to release music after her ARIA Number 1 debut album and tours extensively playing live around Australia. She won the title on I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here in 2017 whilst also nurturing a blossoming stage career which has seen her cast in musical theatre productions including The Flower Children, The Sapphires, Rent and We Will Rock You.
Set amidst the razzle-dazzle decadence of the 1920s, Chicago is the story of Roxie Hart, a housewife and nightclub dancer who murders her on-the-side lover after he threatens to walk out on her. Desperate to avoid conviction, she dupes the public, the media and her rival cellmate, Velma Kelly, by hiring Chicago’s slickest criminal lawyer Billy Flynn to transform her malicious crime into a barrage of sensational headlines, the likes of which might just as easily be ripped from today's tabloids.
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