Leading Australian actress Caroline Gillmer has been cast to play Mama Morton in the Melbourne production of Chicago, set to open July 4. Gillmer won critical acclaim for her performance in the 1995 movie Hotel Sorrento and gained huge public recognition through the long-running soap-opera Neighbours.
Gillmer's casting marks a return to musical theatre and also signals an on-stage reunion with John Diedrich, who will play Billy Flynn. Gillmer and Diedrich worked together in the revue The Twenties and All That Jazz, which transferred to the West End, and in Diedrich's production of Nine, for which Gillmer received accolades for her performance as Saraghina. Her rendition of Be Italian can be heard on the Australian cast album.
Due to ongoing negotiations, Gillmer was not announced at the launch three weeks ago, where 22-year-old newcomer Chelsea Gibb was revealed as a surpise choice for the role of Roxie Hart.
The original Australian production of Chicago, which toured in the early 1980's, starred Judi Connelli as Mama Morton. Connelli recently launched on the New York cabaret scene with great success.
Chicago will play at Her Majesty's Theatre, Melbourne, from July 4. Bookings on (61-3)136166.