Dirty Dancing musical comes to Dartford
PUBLISHED: 07:00 27 September 2018
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The tour of Dirty Dancing - The Classic Story On Stage, will be coming to the Orchard Theatre next month.
The iconic story of Baby and Johnny, featuring the hit songs Hungry Eyes, Hey! Baby, Do You Love Me? and the heart stopping (I’ve Had) The Time Of My Life, returns to the stage, following two blockbuster West End runs, three hit UK tours, and multiple sensational international productions.
Michael O’Reilly will star as Johnny Castle, one half of one of the best-loved duos in popular culture.
Michael is making his professional debut in the show after graduating in dance and musical theatre from Bird College, and is thrilled to be donning Johnny’s iconic shades and leather jacket.
When asked how it feels to be taking on such an iconic role, Michael said: “Once you get over the fact that it’s quite a daunting role to take on because it’s so well-known it’s just really exciting.
“Everyone is so familiar with the show and they’re so familiar with the characters that you’re just excited to do it justice, you’re ready to put in the work and bring it to life.”
Kira Malou will star as idealistic Frances ‘Baby’ Houseman.
Kira is a member of the Dirty Dancing – The Classic Story on Stage family already, having played the role regularly during the 2016-17 UK tour, as well as being a member of the ensemble.
A previous winner of The Stage Scholarship, Kira has performed as a dancer with Ellie Goulding on Children in Need, and at the UEFA World Cup opening ceremony. She has also just finished her first TV series playing the lead role of ‘Mimy’ in the new Disney series School Hacks.
“It’s really exciting but of course there’s also a lot of pressure to do the characters justice,” Kira said.
The show tells the classic story, set in the summer of 1963, where 17 year-old Frances is on holiday in New York’s Catskill Mountains with her older sister and parents.
She shows little interest in the resort activities, and instead discovers her own entertainment when she stumbles across an all-night dance party at the staff quarters.
Mesmerised by the raunchy dance moves and the pounding rhythms, she can’t wait to be part of the scene, especially when she catches sight of Johnny Castle, the resort dance instructor.
When asked what her approach is in bringing a fresh take to the characters, Kira said: “I don’t want to stray too far from what Jennifer Grey did in the film because I personally feel the choices she makes are things I’d do as well.
“Although I’m being a bit bolder with the choices so when she’s being sexy, I want people to be able to see that ‘Baby’ can be really sexy, fiery and smart.”
Speaking about ways in which he can relate to his character, Michael said: “Obviously Johnny in the show is a dancer and I trained in dance myself so that’s kind of the hook I latch onto.
“We come from a similar background, with the training everyone has to go through, but fortunately I haven’t gone through the serious, crippling financial situation Johnny has been through or the unexplained relationship with his dad and the fact his mum is never mentioned.
“That’s a whole grey area that we don’t even know about and it’s a part of the character that I have to work to understand.”
Kira said her favourite song from the show is Hungry Eyes: “I love that song and always have.
“Before I even auditioned for the show it was my alarm in the morning!”
Dirty Dancing – The Classic Story On Stage originally opened at London’s Aldwych Theatre in 2006 with a record-breaking advance of £15 million, making it the fastest ever selling show in West End theatre history.
The show will be at The Orchard Theatre, Home Gardens, Dartford from Monday October 1 to Saturday October 6.
For tickets visit orchardtheatre.co.uk or call 01322 220000.