Actor, comedian and impressionist Alistair McGowan continues his association with West End musicals by joining the cast of Cabaret on 21 April. The former Big Impression star, who played crazed dentist Orin Scrivello in Little Shop Of Horrors last year, replaces fellow comedian Julian Clary as the Emcee of Cabaret’s Kit Kat Klub. He joins a cast that includes Amy Nuttall, Angela Richards and fellow Little Shop star Barry James.
McGowan is best known for his impressions of stars including David Beckham, Gary Lineker, Sven Goran Eriksson and half the cast of EastEnders, which delighted the nation in his show The Big Impression, winning a BAFTA in 2003.
In recent years he has built a reputation as a musical theatre performer, appearing first in the Royal Shakespeare Company’s production of Merry Wives: The Musical, before replacing Jasper Britton as Scrivello opposite James’s Mushnik in the Menier Chocolate Factory’s hit production of Little Shop Of Horrors, a performance for which he received a Laurence Olivier Award nomination. Earlier this year he appeared in the title role of The Mikado at the Gielgud.
Away from musicals, his previous theatrical credits include Art (Wyndham’s), Kafka’s Dick, Endgame (both Nottingham Playhouse) and The Government Inspector (Chichester).
The current Rufus Norris-directed revival of Cabaret opened at the Lyric in October 2006, with Anna Maxwell Martin playing Sally Bowles and Sheila Hancock giving a Laurence Olivier Award-winning performance as Fraulein Schneider. The Kander and Ebb musical is set in Weimar Berlin of 1931. At the Kit Kat Klub, a hive of decadence and moral ambiguity, the performers and patrons seek solace from the realities of the changing world and the onset of war.
Cabaret is currently booking until November 2008. em>MA