US film and television star Jack McBrayer, best known as Kenneth in 30 Rock, will make his West End debut in the role of Ogie in Waitress, which will begin preview performances on 8 February 2019 ahead of its official opening night on 7 March at London’s Adelphi Theatre.
As previously announced, Katharine McPhee will star as Jenna, having played the role on Broadway earlier this year, alongside Marisha Wallace as Becky, Laura Baldwin as Dawn, Peter Hannah as Earl and with David Hunter as Dr. Pomatter. Currently playing its third year on Broadway, Waitress will bring with it an all-female lead creative team – a West End musical first.
Waitress also recently announced the first of its “Cast Album Karaoke” nights in London, meaning that theatre lovers who have always dreamt of singing on the West End stage will soon be able to make their dream a reality. The first ever karaoke nights will be held post-show on 19 February and 18 March 2019. For the chance to sing one minute of any song from the show – live on stage and accompanied by the show’s musical director Katharine Woolley – interested audience members just need to sign up in the theatre before the performance.
The musical opened on 24 April 2016 at Broadway’s Brooks Atkinson Theater. Based on the 2007 motion picture written by Adrienne Shelly, it was the first Broadway musical in history to have four women in the four top creative team spots, with a book by Jessie Nelson, a score by six-time Grammy Award-nominated singer-songwriter Sara Bareilles, choreography by Lorin Latarro and direction by Tony Award-winner Diane Paulus. The production is currently touring the US and has also recently announced it will have its Australian premiere in 2020 at the Sydney Lyric Theatre.
On its Broadway opening, Waitress was nominated for four Outer Critics’ Circle Awards, including Outstanding New Broadway Musical; two Drama League Award nominations, including Outstanding Production of a Broadway or Off-Broadway Musical; six Drama Desk nominations, including Outstanding Musical; and four Tony Award nominations, including Best Musical.
Jack McBrayer was Emmy-nominated for his portrayal of Kenneth Parcell on the multi-award winning series 30 Rock for NBC. He is also known for his work on The Jack and Triumph Show for Universal/Adult Swim. He can be seen in Cooties opposite Elijah Wood and Rainn Wilson for Lionsgate which premiered at Sundance. McBrayer also starred in Forgetting Sarah Marshall opposite Jason Segel. His other credits include Talladega Nights: The Ballad Of Ricky Bobby; The Campaign opposite Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis; The To Do List; and They Came Together opposite Paul Rudd.
He can also be seen appearing on ABC’s The Middle, Comedy Central’s Drunk History and USA’s Playing House. He can be heard voicing the lead role of Fix-It Felix in Wreck-It Ralph. His other animated film voice credits include Despicable Me for Universal, The Simpsons on Fox and Archer on FX.