When you think of festivals, you instantly start thinking about standing in the rain, getting cold and being stuck in large crowds. Well MT Fest UK is going to be the exact opposite if that. Basically, it’s actually going to be fun.
When MT Fest was first announced last year, one of the biggest things they revealed was a Taster Menu. This is MT Fest UK’s series of eight new musicals, each lasting 45 minutes, that will be semi-staged. And now they’ve gone and announced the castings for these musicals, and it’s pretty epic.
AA (11-13 February)
Written by Olivier Award-winning composer Richard Thomas, this story is set within an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting.
Cast: Matt Henry as Twirley, Connor Byrne as Irish Bob, Emma Lindars as Abby, Rosemary Ashe as Angela, Dan Buckley as Bar Man, Matt White as Bert, Scott Garnham as Dave, Sooz Kempner as Lena, Declan Bennett as Rickie, Jenny O’Leary as Rose, Scott Paige as Simon.
Nerds (11-13 February)
The rise of computer technology and the two men that made it all possible: Bill Gates and Steve Jobs.
Cast: Dan Buckley as Bill Gates, Kane Oliver Parry as Steve Jobs, Scott Garnham as Paul Allen, Bronté Barbé as Myrtle, Oliver Ormson as Steve Wozniak, Jenny O’Leary as Thekla, Scott Paige as Tim, Rebecca Lock as Sally/Oracle and Matt White as Narrator.
First Date (14-16 February)
Performed in real time, a blind-date newbie and serial-dater meet for a drink. But before they know it, their first date has become a hilarious high-stakes dinner.
Cast: Liam Doyle as Aaron, Sophie Isaacs as Casey, Dean John Wilson as Man 1, Natalie Douglas as Woman and Russell Wilcox as Man 2.
Porn, the Musical (14-16 February)
Stefan’s quiet life on the island of Malta is shattered by a shock revelation, so he heads to America for a fresh start.
Cast: Russell Wilcox as Alfred Itchcock, Liam Doyle as Dr Jonny, Natalie Douglas as Mrs Bugeja, Sophie Isaacs as Sandy and Dean John Wilson as Stefan.
But I’m a Cheerleader: The Musical (18-20 February)
Megan, an all-American high school cheerleader seems to have it all. But her friends and family suspect Megan she’s lesbian, so send her packing to the True Directions rehabilitation camp.
Cast: Bronté Barbé as Megan, Carrie Hope Fletcher as Graham, Jamie Muscato as Jared, Matt Henry as Mike, Ben Forster as Larry, Stephen Hogan as Lloyd and Luke Bayer as Clayton.
Bloody Bloody Jessica Fletcher (18-20 February)
A musical parody of an iconic character. There’s been another gruesome murder in Cabot Cove! Should the police be called? The FBI? The CSI? Nope. We have a geriatric novelist on the case.
Cast: Harriet Thorpe as Jessica, Verity Rushworth as Victoria, Connor Byrne as Mr Drake, Jemma Alexander as Lulu, Russell Walker as Seth and Steven Serlin as Tom
The Astonishing Return of… The Protagonists (21-23 February)
A group of once mighty superheroes battling the forces of evil. But 20 years later, they find themselves battling the forces of thinning hair and menopause.
Cast: Christina Bennington as Penelope, Rob Fowler as Voltman, Leo Ihenacho as Dr Zappus, Oliver Ormson as Fishboy and the voice of Nathan Amzi as Narrator.
Killer Queen (21-23 February)
Combining rap and RnB with 18th century France to retell a story that sparked a revolution. When Marie Antoinette married King Louis, her reputation was already tarnished by gossip. But when she is implicated in a crime, it is not just her reputation at stake, but the monarchy and France itself.
Cast: Izuka Hoyle as Jeanne, Christina Bennington as Marie Antoinette and Leo Ihenacho as Vilette.
The Taster Menu series will also feature current Arts Ed students Jessie Angell, Billy Downes, George Griffiths, Ahmed Hamad, Emily Hammond, Emilia Harrigan, Jonathan Hermosa-Lopez and Connor Lewis.
The brain-child of Paul Taylor-Mills, MT Fest UK will also host Tea for Two talks through the festival. Theatre experts will give advice, insider knowledge and share stories in a series of intimate evening talks.
There will also be a late-night concert series with West End stars including Nathan Amzi (Heathers, Aladdin), Luke Bayer (Everyone’s Talking About Jamie), Rob Houchen (Eugenius) and Sophie Isaacs (Heathers).