Hairspray, the smash musical comedy set in 1962 Baltimore which has been delighting Broadway critics and audiences, will launch its first U.S. tour Sept. 9, 2003, at the Mechanic Theatre in Baltimore.
As of yet, no official announcement has been made about the dates or details of the tour. However, a July report in the Baltimore Sun said the road show would launch in Baltimore in 2003. And the Sept. 9 issue of Variety featured an ad naming the theatre and start date.
Producers of the Marc Shaiman-Scott Wittman-Thomas Meehan-Mark O'Donnell sensation will hold open auditions for the road cast on Sept. 20 in lower Manhattan. Applicants for all the major leads are sought. Interestingly, the casting agency specifically asks for male actors to audition for the Harvey Fierstein role of weight-challenged mom Edna Turnblad.
The Broadway production continues to attract plenty of cash and ink. After a new block of tickets for the hit musical comedy went on sale Aug. 14 —one day before the official opening—Hairspray saw a $1.7 million intake at the box office.
Hairspray began previews July 18 at the newly renovated Neil Simon Theatre. Two days before the opening, the Hairspray original cast album was released by Sony Classical. Marissa Jaret Winokur (Grease!, Hair) and Harvey Fierstein (Torch Song Trilogy) headline the company as Plain Jane Tracy Turnblad and her plump mother Edna, respectively. Also featured are Kerry Butler (Bat Boy) as Tracy's ditzy best friend Penny Pingleton, Dick Latessa (Cabaret, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum) as loving father and husband Wilbur Turnblad, Matthew Morrison (Footloose) as teen dreamboat Link Larkin, Clarke Thorell (Saturday Night, Titanic) as dance revue host Corny Collins, Laura Bell Bundy as the evil seed Amber Von Tussle, Linda Hart as her villainous mother, Velma, Mary Bond Davis as soulful DJ MotorMouth Mabel, Corey Reynolds as Penny's love interest, Seaweed, and Danelle Wilson as Seaweed's little sister, Little Inez.
"Hairspray," which, in John Waters' film form, starred Ricki Lake, Sonny Bono and Waters perennial Divine, is set in 1962 Baltimore, where the girl with the biggest hair and the best moves can obtain fame on the city's number one dance revue, "The Corny Collins Show." When lovable, chubby Tracy Turnblad defeats the show's reigning queen, Amber Von Tussle, the girl's evil, bigoted mother, a former beauty queen, wants revenge. Turnblad's own parents, however, are there to make sure Tracy stays on top. In the course of her rise, Tracy falls for, wins and then loses the handsomest boy on "Corny Collins. She even winds up in jail where she learns love and integration are worth the fight.
Hairspray's score includes the following numbers: "Good Morning, Baltimore," "The Nicest Kids in Town," "Mama, I'm a Big Girl Now," "I Can Hear the Bells," "(The Legend of) Miss Balitmore Crabs," "It Takes Two," "Welcome to the '60's," "Run and Tell That," "Big, Blonde and Beautiful," "The Big Dollhouse," "Good Morning, Baltimore (Reprise)," "Timeless to Me," "Without Love" "I Know Where I've Been," "Cooties" and "You Can't Stop the Beat."