Guaranteed to put a smile on your face, Chester Operatic Society are heading to Storyhouse with their production of the classic musical Singin’ in the Rain.
The society is the first amateur company in the city to put on a full-scale performance on the theatre’s main stage with their production of the 1952 American musical romantic comedy.
Frequently regarded as the best movie musical ever made, Singin’ in the Rain features songs such as Good Morning and Make ‘Em Laugh, as well as the iconic title number.
The COS production, complete with spectacular dance numbers and a ‘curtain of water’, will highlight the diverse talents of the society’s membership.
Set in 1920s Hollywood, this light-hearted romantic comedy focuses on the trials and tribulations of two actors during the transition from silent pictures to the early days of sound film.
The role of silent movie star Don Lockwood, played on screen by Gene Kelly, will be taken in this production by Chris Wright from Chester, whose sister Natalie also features in the show.
Chris started performing at the age of 11, making his professional debut in South Pacific at the Liverpool Empire. Following this, he continued his training in musical theatre at both the Birmingham School of Acting (previously known as the Birmingham School of Speech and Drama) and the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts.
He has performed all over the UK in shows such as Little Shop of Horrors, Crazy for You, Guys and Dolls, 42nd Street and Beauty and the Beast.
Female leads Kathy Selden and Lina Lamont are to be played by Stacey Buckley and Susie Lydiate.
Teacher Stacey, who started performing at an early stage, appeared on the Storyhouse Garret Theatre stage in September last year as Blanche Barrow in Chester Operatic’s sell-out production of Bonnie and Clyde and has played a variety of leading roles in other shows.
Susie owns Moo Music Chester, who provide sensory music sessions and baby massage courses in the local area.
Singin in the Rain is being directed by long-standing society member Julian Eyre, who has both performed in and directed the society’s productions before, as well as being a member of Guilden Sutton Players.
Musical direction for the show is provided by Richard Aaron Davies, a freelance director, actor and vocal coach from North Wales, who has been involved in a number of COS projects over the last five years, most notably Bonnie and Clyde and The Addams Family Musical.
Noted for its stunning tap routines, Singin’ in the Rain needs an experienced choreographer and for this show the society have engaged the services of Rob Stevens, who runs his own dance school in Wrexham and also teaches for a number of theatre schools in the North West.
Performances will be at 7.30pm on Thursday, February 8, Friday, February 9 and Saturday, February 10, with an additional matinee on the Saturday at 2.30pm. Tickets are priced at £20 (matinee £16). For further information and to book tickets, go to www.storyhouse.com.