The multi-award winning JERSEY BOYS is not only packed with solid gold hit after hit, but really is the ultimate story of rags to riches, fame and fortune.
This Tony, Grammy and Olivier Award-winning musical, which is currently on the road and running simultaneously with the smash-hit West End production, playing to packed houses at the newly refurbished Trafalgar Theatre. New dates have been added and for the first time, the show gets to the Wales Millennium Centre for 16 performances in April.
The Jersey Boys were were just four guys from New Jersey, until they sang their very first note. They had a sound nobody had ever heard… and the radio just couldn’t get enough of them. But while their harmonies were perfect onstage, off stage it was a very different story – a story that has made them an international sensation all over again.
The young man who gets to play FRANKIE VALLI at certain performances is RYAN HEENAN, no stranger to South Wales theatres having played the Wales Millennium Centre and New Theatre a few years ago.
We spoke to Ryan prior to his visit to Swansea last year with the tour. We spoke about his love of all things Four Seasons (the group not the actual seasons)and how being in this tour has made his parents extra proud. After a little look at the tour trailer, Ryan first gives us the lowdown on the Seasons story.
FRANKI VALLI AND THE FOUR SEASONS weren’t just stars, they were a proper phenomenon, with a sound complimented by a catalogue of incredible songs by BOB GAUDIO and BOB CREWE. You pick up any single at the time and there’s a chance you’d see the two Bob’s on there. The amount of hits they churned out was staggering, and with the vocal of Frankie & the guys, they were all sure-fire hits.
When the band finally split, as they inevitably would, that should have been it, but when MARSHALL BRICKMAN and RICK ELICE saw something in the lives of the band, they set about creating the story of the Jersey Boys, and Oh, what a story it is.
The show chronicles the life and times of Frankie and his legendary group, and yes, it’s the classic songs which lead the show – such as Beggin’, Sherry, Walk Like A Man, December, 1963 (Oh What a Night), Big Girls Don’t Cry, My Eyes Adored You, Let’s Hang On (To What We’ve Got), Bye Bye Baby, Can’t Take My Eyes Off You, Working My Way Back to You, Fallen Angel, Rag Doll and Who Loves You. But as we said, it’s also one hell of a story filled with success, failure, fighting and love with a heartbreaking tale of family tragedy.
The show originally opened in New York in November 2005 and, by the time it closed in 2017, it was the 12th longest running show in Broadway history. It returned to New York with a new production later that year. The JERSEY BOYS US National Tour is still breaking house records in cities across North America.
The show first arrived in London’s West End in March 2008 and ran for nine amazing years (almost to the day), at the time it was the sixth longest musical running in the West End. Last year, it returned to the West End, opening the new multi-million pound reinstated Trafalgar Theatre.
The UK and Ireland Tour is staged by the entire original Broadway creative team, led by the Tony Award-winning team of director Des McAnuff and choreographer Sergio Trujillo, with scenic design by Klara Zieglerova, costume design by Jess Goldstein, lighting by Howell Binkley, sound by Steve Canyon Kennedy and projections design by Michael Clark. The orchestrations are by Steve Orich and the music supervision and vocal arrangements by Ron Melrose. Casting is by Jill Green.
As well as Ryan MICHAEL PICKERING is Frankie on this tour. BLAIR GIBSON plays Bob Gaudio, CHRISTOPHER SHORT is Nick Massi and DALTON WOOD is Tommy Devito. You can meet the entire cast and company, and find out more about the tour HERE.
JERSEY BOYS gets to the Wales Millennium Centre in 2023 from the 11th to 22nd April. Performances are at 7:30pm each evening with 2:30pm matinee shows on the first Wednesday, and then each Thursday and Saturday. For more details and tickets, go HERE.
Just be aware that the show is a real story, set on the streets of New Jersey, so the language may not be suitable for younger audiences – parental guidance advised.