London Oliver! Star Jodie Prenger Takes Vocal Rest

News   London Oliver! Star Jodie Prenger Takes Vocal Rest Jodie Prenger, the actress chosen by public vote on the reality TV show "I'd Do Anything" to play the lead role of Nancy in the current production of Oliver! at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, is currently out of the show.

According to a statement on the ticketing website for the theatre, "On the advice of her doctors, Jodie Prenger will be taking an enforced break from appearing in Oliver! from March 2-7. Medical examination following a recurring sore throat has revealed some minor swelling to the vocal cords which is a common problem in singers. The medical advice is to take six complete days rest to prevent the problem from developing into a serious condition, at the end of which she will resume her normal performance schedule." In her absence, the role of Nancy will be shared between Tamsin Carroll (who already plays the role on Wednesday and Thursday evenings, and previously played Nancy in the 2002 Australian production of the show) and Sarah Lark, who was one of the finalists in the "I'd Do Anything" competition.

According to the statement, "The producers apologise for any disappointment this may cause, as with any live performance the appearance of the billed performers cannot always be guaranteed due to illness or other unavoidable circumstances."

Connie Fisher, who won the first reality TV casting call to play the lead role of Maria in The Sound of Music at the London Palladium in 2006, also had to take an enforced break of two weeks leave in February 2007 owing to illness. She had, at the time, been performing all eight shows every week; after her illness, she scaled back to a six-performance schedule, sharing the role with Aoife Mulholland (another finalist form the original TV program, "How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria?"). At the time, producer Andrew Lloyd Webber was reported saying, "I blame myself — she had an injury to one of the muscles in her throat. Connie made one mistake. She did 98 performances on the trot, eight shows a week. Originally, we said she should do six and someone else would play the other two and that's what for many years has been the standard practice in the West End. Connie was so determined to prove that she was the people's Maria that she insisted on all eight. But we should have insisted that she do the six and we didn't."

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