Yes it’s true, THE GREAT BRITISH BAKE OFF has been turned into a brand new musical which has premiered at the Everyman Theatre in Cheltenham, and our very own JOHN OWEN JONES is starring.
The GBBO has been such a massive success over 12 series (13 later this year), that it was inevitable it would be turned into a stage show, the question is will it rise beautifully, or sink like an under proved loaf of bread? By all accounts it’s the former with excellent first night reviews and although nothing lined up as yet, the producers are hoping to take it onto the West End and out on tour. So who knows, we may well see it heading our way too.
RICHARD MCKERROW, the creator of the Great British Bake Off and founder of Love Productions, the nation’s favourite baking show has been magically reimagined into a perfectly formed musical-comedy. Complete with eight amateur bakers, hilarious presenters, two iconic judges, and the most delicious original score; this is the ultimate stage showstopper!
And it is Burry Port’s JOHN OWEN JONES who plays one of the judges, Phil Hollyhurst, with ROSEMARY ASHE playing Pam Leigh. Of course they aren’t inspired, or based on any real life life baking show judges – are they?
In the musical we get to follow the trials and tribulations of our competitors, all with their own special stories to tell and as unique from one another as their marvellous baked creations. Find out who will triumph as Star Baker, and who will fall foul of a soggy bottom. Expect heartwarming characters, ounces of laughter and mouthwatering music in this brand-new and original British musical, suitable for the whole family!
It was because of lockdown that the stage show’s co-writers PIPPA CLEARY AND JAKE BRUNGER came up with the idea. Like many of us they binged on TV shows, while we did it to pass the time, they said it was all in the name of research.
The pair bubbled together, re-watching every single episode of Bake Off and examining every past contestant to settle upon the most common character types to include in their play.
Incidentally, SCOTT PAIGE is also in the show who you may remember was in Nativity, as My Poppy when it played at the Wales Millennium Centre a few years back. You can see our interview with him HERE.
John is one of our best known and much loved singers. At the age of 19 he left Wales to study acting at the prestigious Royal Central School of Speech and Drama in London. Since then he has worked as an actor and singer in theatres all over the country in a great number of different shows. However, he is probably best known for his acclaimed record-breaking performances in Boublil and Schonberg’s Les Miserables and in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s The Phantom of the Opera.
He remains the youngest actor in history to have played Jean Valjean in Les Miserables (a role he also played twice on Broadway), was voted the “Best Ever Valjean” and “Best Ever Performer in Les Miserables” by fans of the show worldwide and can be heard as Valjean on the Les Miserables Live! album. His re-interpretation of the character on the re-imagined 25th anniversary production earned him a Manchester Evening News Award for Best Actor in a Musical in 2010.
I actually saw John in that role many years ago and can tell you he was astonishing, and pretty hard to beat.
If you want to catch him in THE GREAT BRITISH BAKE OFF – THE MUSICAL then you’ll need to be quick. It’s at the Everyman Theatre in Cheltenham till the 6th August. More details HERE.
He then heads out on his own MUSIC OF THE NIGHT TOUR which gets to the Aberystwyth Arts Centre on Thursday 8th September. The following evening (9th) he plays The Gate Arts Centre in Cardiff, you can get those tickets HERE. They start at £30.94 but there’s a limited amount of Meet & Greet available at £61.88, with a photo opportunity and an exclusive lanyard.