The musical version of Mel Brooks’ hit 1974 monster comedy film YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN is proving very popular in the West End this festive season. Featuring in the title role as Dr.Frederick Frankenstein is Hadley Fraser and his buxom assisant Inga played by Summer Strallen. Both signed this sketch for me a couple of weeks ago at the Garrick Theatre’s stage door.
English actor and singer Hadley Fraser takes the lead role as Frederick Frankenstein in Mel Brook’s musical version of his 1974 film YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN, which opened at the Garrick Theatre last month. Hadley made his West End debut as Marius in LES MISERABLES at the Palace Theatre in 2002 and performed the role of Grantaire in LES MISERABLES IN CONCERT: THE 25TH ANNIVERSARY at London’s 02 in 2010. The following year he played Raoul in three special concerts of THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA at the Royal Albert Hall to celebrate the show’s 25th Anniversary, the last of which was screened live around the world. Also in 2011 he returned to LES MISERABLES as Javert at the Queens Theatre for a year. He signed this drawing for me at the stage door after a Saturday matinee a few weeks ago.
Dianne Pilkington’s impressive stage career began in 1997 when became a cast member in the West End production of LES MISERABLES, including understudying the role of Fantine. After the UK tour of CATS, Dianne was selected to portray Glinda in the musical WICKED at the Apollo Victoria Theatre in 2007. From 2013-2016 she played Donna Sheridan in MAMMA MIA! at the Novello Theatre. This month Dianne began the West End run of Mel Brook’s musical version of his 1974 film YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN at the Garrick Theatre, playing Frederick Frankenstein’s fiancée Elizabeth Benning. Dianne signed my drawing after Saturday’s matinee.
The ‘gentle giant’, 6′ 3′ American singer and actor Shuler Hensley revived his role as the Monster in Mel Brook’s musical version of his 1974 YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN when it opened at the Garrick Theatre in London’s West End this month. It’s a role he originated on Broadway in 2007, earning a Tony nomination before continuing the part for the US National tour.
Schuler is no stranger to London audiences, winning the Olivier Award for his portrayal of Jud Fry in OKLAHOMA at the National Theatre in 1998, before transferring a year later to the Lyceum in the West End. In 2002 it crossed the Atlantic to Broadway’s George Gershwin Theatre where he continued his winning ways, collecting the Tony in the process. Shuler signed my Monster sketch at the Garrick stage door on Saturday on his way in for the matinee.
English actress Lesley Joseph sobbed… but in a good way, when she found out she had won the role of housekeeper and superannuated lover of the original Doctor F Frau Boucher in Mel Brook’s new West End stage production of his 1974 film YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN. “Oh my God I’m going to be working with Mel Brooks!”
Lesley became an international name as Dorian Green in the British TV sitcom BIRDS OF A FEATHER and recently as a contestant on STRICTLY COME DANCING with partner Anton Du Beke. In his four-star review for The Independent, Paul Taylor wrote, “Lesley Joseph brings a superb hatchet-faced obsessiveness to Frau Blucher and her idiotic goose-stepping devotion to the memory of the violent older Frankenstein.”
Lesley signed my Frau B sketch going into the Garrick Theatre for Saturday’s matinee.
Forty-year-old Northumberland-born funnyman Ross Noble has been performing since he was smuggled into his local comedy club at the age of 15. Since then he has become a regular on TV’s mainstream comedy shows. This month he made his West End musical debut as the hunchbacked servant Igor in Mel Brook’s YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN at the Garrick Theatre, which has its opening tomorrow night. The Geordie stand-up is playing the role made famous by comic legend Marty Feldman in the original 1974 film version. “I have an advantage, I come with my own hump”, he said in a recent interview.
He made his musical debut in another Mel Brook’s show, THE PRODUCERS on its 2015 UK tour, playing pigeon fancier Frank Liebkind. His initial conversations for YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN was over the phone when Mel who acted out every character. “I got my own private Mel Brooks performance”, Ross said. He signed this sketch for me at the stage door over after last Saturday’s matinee.