The Balor Theatre in Ballybofey has had a great tradition in musicals over the last few years with "The Sound Of Music", "Annie", "Oliver" and last year's huge summer success, "Grease", establishing a fully deserved reputation for top quality and great entertainment.
This year's summer musical is "Hairspray", one of the most popular Broadway and West End musicals of recent times.
"Hairspray" tells the story of teenager Tracy Turnblad (played by Eimear Friel), who dreams of dancing on the local TV dance programme, The Corny Collins Show. Overcoming the objections of her mother, Edna (Michael Duffy), Tracy wins a role on the show and becomes a celebrity overnight. She decides to use her newfound position of influence to encourage integration and end the show's policy of discrimination.
Director Caroline Bell and choreographer Michael Duffy reprise their roles from last year's production of "Grease". Andrea Long also returns as musical director and voice coach, along with Tracey Faulkner and Ryan Quinn.
There’s a distinct West End influence to this production. Choreographer Michael Duffy has just finished his first year of study at Urdang University in Islington, a breeding ground for West End talent. Joining the backstage team as voice music and acting coach is Denis Grindle, star of the West End production of "The Commitments" and a former Balor Youth Theatre pupil.
"Hairspray" is famed for its big music and dance numbers, but its savvy storyline also demands quality acting performances. It’s the attention to detail in all three areas – music, choreography and stagecraft – that have earned in-house Balor shows deserved plaudits in the past. This production seems set to top anything that has gone before. With a foot-tappin’ upbeat soundtrack of 1960’s style dance music and downtown rhythm and blues combined with a social message, "Hairspray" is the perfect showcase for this exceptionally talented young local cast.
"Hairspray" runs from Tuesday, August 8th, to Saturday, August 12th, at The Balor, Ballybofey at 8pm nightly.
Tickets are priced at €15, €10 concession and €40 for a family of 4 (2 adults, 2 children). They’re selling extremely quickly so please book early. Tickets can be booked from the Balor Box Office on 0749131840 or online at www.balorartscentre.com.