Principal casting has been announced for the gala concert presentation of Robert J Sherman‘s new musical BUMBLESCRATCH, which runs for one night only at the West End’s Adelphi Theatre on Sunday 4 September 2016, as part of commemorations for the 350th anniversary of the Great Fire of London. Darren Day returns to the West End musical stage to take the title role of Melbourne Bumblescratch, starring alongside Michael Xavier, fresh from Sunset Boulevard opposite Glenn Close, and Jessica Martin, recently seen in Elf. Further casting is to be announced.
BUMBLESCRATCH is a new musical comedy by Robert J. Sherman. Set in London during the Great Plague of 1665 and the Great Fire of 1666, it is told from the perspective of a demented, lascivious plague rat named Melbourne Bumblescratch (Darren Day), who demonstrates his unique and twisted love affair with the ancient city through telling his marvellously gruesome tales.
BUMBLESCRATCH has music, lyrics and book by Robert J. Sherman, continuing the enduring legacy of his father and uncle, Robert B. and Richard M. Sherman, a.k.a The Sherman Brothers, the songwriting duo behind childhood classics including Mary Poppins and The Jungle Book. It is directed by Stewart Nicholls, who also collaborated with Sherman on the critically acclaimed Love Birds and A Spoonful of Sherman.
The performance on 4 September 2016 at 6.30pm is held in aid of Variety, the Children’s Charity, and forms part of the commemorations for the 350th Anniversary of the Great Fire of London, which raged in the East End for four days from 2 to 5 September 1666. Tickets are priced £15, £25, £35, £40, £50, and £80, with gala packages available at £150.
Darren Day plays Melbourne Bumblescratch. His first starring theatre role was Joseph in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (West End and international tour). Other West End credits include Summer Holiday, Grease and Copacabana. Touring work includes Alfie, Carousel, Great Expectations, Godspell, The Rocky Horror Show, We Will Rock You and Hello Dolly. He has presented The Children’s Royal Variety Performance twice. He is an established television actor, with leading roles in Hollyoaks, Holby, Crime Stories, Doctors, and The Bill. In 2016 he co-starred in the feature film White Island, he toured internationally with his solo concert show and he also starred in Priscilla, Queen of the Desert (UK tour).
Jessica Martin plays Bethesda and Widow MacGregor. She recently appeared in Elf (Dominion Theatre). Other credits include Me and My Girl (Adelphi and UK tour), Mack and Mabel (Southwark Playhouse), Spamalot (UK tour), Sunset Boulevard (Comedy Theatre), Me, Myself and I (Orange Tree), South Pacific (Churchill Theatre and UK tour), Mack and Mabel (Piccadilly Theatre), Shakers (Nottingham Playhouse), The Card and Babes in Arms (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre). Prior to working in musical theatre, she was a comedian and has appeared in a number of television roles including Copycats, Spitting Image and Doctor Who.
Michael Xavier plays Hookbeard. He recently played the lead role of Joe Gillis opposite Glenn Close in Sunset Boulevard (ENO/London Coliseum). He was nominated for two Olivier Awards in 2011: Best Supporting Performance in a Musical for Into The Woods (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre) and Best Actor in a Musical for Love Story (Duchess Theatre and Chichester Festival Theatre). Other theatre credits include Show Boat (Sheffield Crucible), The War of the Roses (Rose Theatre, Kingston), Assassins (Menier Chocolate Factory), The Pajama Game (Shaftesbury Theatre), The Sound of Music (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre), Hello Dolly! (Leicester Curve), Soho Cinders (Soho Theatre), Oklahoma! (Chichester Festival Theatre), Spamalot (Palace Theatre), The Phantom of the Opera (Her Majesty’s Theatre), My Fair Lady (Theatre Royal Drury Lane) and Miss Saigon (original UK tour).