New Cast Members to Join London Production of Boy George's Taboo
By Mark Shenton
Several new cast members will join the London company of Boy George's Taboo beginning Dec. 23.
Paul Treacy and Jordan-Luke Gage, both currently training at Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts, will make their professional debuts as Boy George and Marilyn, respectively. Also new to the cast will be Devon-Elise Johnson as Kim, Alex Jordan-Mills as Billy, Julia Worsley as Billy's mother Josie, Paul Kevin-Taylor as Josie's husband Derek, Sarah Goggin as Janey and Matthew Gent in the ensemble.
They join Paul Baker and Sam Buttery, who continue as Philip Salon and Leigh Bowery, respectively, as well as Owain Wiliams as Steve Strange, Katie Kerr as Big Sue, and ensemble members Jennifer Hepburn and Zeph Gould.
Taboo is directed by its original co-creator and director Christopher Renshaw, who staged the show's first production in the converted basement of a church off Leicester Square in 2002 (that has since become the Leicester Square Theatre).
Taboo was subsequently briefly brought to Broadway's Plymouth Theatre under the auspices of Rosie O'Donnell and Adam Kenwright as lead producers in 2003.
According to press materials, the new production is actively supported by the talents of many of the original creative team, including writer Markham and composer/lyricist and star of the original run, Boy George. Music and orchestrations are by Boy George and Kevan Frost, and Mike Dixon is the production musical consultant. It is cast by Anne Vosser, who was the show's original casting director as well, and produced by Danielle Tarento and Bronia Buchanan.
Taboo is described as a "musical portrait of a brief but remarkable era of 1980s London, in which a rebellion among young people, in the midst of mass unemployment and social upheaval, ultimately found its expression in outrageous fashions and a decadent nightlife. These were the 'New Romantics' – leaders of a phenomenon which left a lasting influence on both the face and fate of pop, fashion and social culture. Taboo tells a story between a young girl and boy swept up in this artistic climate and also focuses on two other young real-life characters – Leigh Bowery, a brilliant, anarchic performance artist and designer, and George O’Dowd, a young, rough-edged boy who arrives in London and, once part of the Eighties club world, becomes the surprising crossover star of the scene, Boy George. From squat to superstardom, from rock to rock bottom, both mens' stories are played out against the background of Taboo, the nightclub that came to symbolise the excess and decadence of 1980s London and subsequently defined a generation."
Tickets are on sale now through Ticketweb, 08444 771 000, or visit www.taboothemusical.co.uk for more details.
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