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Hairspray is a musical by Mark O'Donnell and Thomas Meehan (book), Marc Shaiman (music) and Scott Wittman (lyrics).

Sometimes referred to as Hairspray - The Musical or Hairspray the Musical.

The original text

Based on John Waters's 1988 film of the same name[1], it is set in 1962’s Baltimore, and tells the story of Tracy Turnblad, a big girl who not only sets out to be picked as a dancer on local television programme, The Corny Collins Show, but to also ensure that it becomes racially integrated. .

It opened in Seattle in 2002 and moved to Broadway later that year, winning eight Tony Awards in 2003. Closed on January 4, 2009. Companies continued to tour various parts of the world with it till the 2020s.

Translations and adaptations

Made into a second film in 2007, also with the same name[2].

Performance history in South Africa

2007: Performed as Hairspray in South Africa, opening at the at the Lyric Theatre at Gold Reef City Casino, produced by Steven Joffe (CEO of Gold Reef City Resorts), Richard Loring (Executive Producer), Debra Batzofin (Associate Producer), and Denis Hutchinson (Theatre and Lighting Designer). The huge cast included Harry Sideropoulos (Edna), Marah Louw (Motormouth Maybelle), Kate Normington (Velma Von Tussle), Mike Huff (Wilbur), Elizca Coetzer (Tracy), Vicky Friedman (Penny), Jo Galloway (Amber), Kyle Grant (Link), Earl Gregory (Seaweed), as well as Nonhle Beryl Makhaya, Pulane Rampoana and Ntambo Rapatla (The Dynamites).

2010: The tenth annual Rainbow Young Performers Project and ran at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre in Durban from July 2 to July 18. The creative team included Themi Venturas and Charon Williams-Ros. It was supported by Rainbow and co-presented by the Performing Arts Network of South Africa (Pansa).

2011: Hairspray performed at the Alexander Playhouse, East London by DRAMSOC in December, directed by Michele Brandenburger. The playhouse designed and created their own little orchestra pit for this production.

2019: Hairspray The Musical presented at the Artscape Theatre in Cape Town from 2 to 16 February by the Pinelands Players.

2022: Hairspray: The Musical presented at the Baxter Theatre, Cape Town, by Hoërskool Jan van Riebeeck and the Baxter Theatre, in collaboration with Cape Town Theatre Company and DALRO on May 4-7. Produced by Geruan Geldenhuys for Hoërskool Jan van Riebeeck, directed by Rushney Ferguson and Regina R. Malan, with choreography by Rushney Ferguson and Alex Rodkin. The musical director was Regina Malan, dialogue coach Linda van der Walt, stage manager and props: Morag Tison and set and creative design by the Cape Town Theatre Company. The large cast included Marilé Engelbrecht, Lu-wyk Steyn, Simon van der Berg, Gideon van Zyl, Phumie Oliphant, Amuran Bester, Giulia Nel, Phillip Herbst, Daniella Coetzee, Ankia Erasmus, Nina Crouse, Ayden Februarie, Onela Mnyengeza, Simone Jacobs, Logan Hoogboord, Nadia Manuel, Hanje Hattingh, Mieke Strydom and Natasha Roos.


Cindy Watkins: Lebu Salimani Loraine: Onela Roxo Stooie/jail bird: Donnagene Lings Kamilah/jail bird: Keena Humphreys Judine: Shemuella Mars Shayna/ jail bird: Stacey-Lee Hurling Janice: Sarah Peters Teresa: Asanda Sibisi Ruth/ jail bird: Nia Dookins Gilbert/ jogger: Adam Liebenberg Duan/gentleman: Ethan Pieterse Becky: Mia Voster Tammy: Karu Rademyer Fender: Alexia Selzer Brenda: Kristy Stipp Sketch: Bea Orffer Shelly: Carla van den Berg Lou Ann: Luca Zulch Doreen: Mia van den Berg Mean girl/council mom: Clarise Strydom Mean girl/guard: Lara-Lisa Senekal Mean girl/jail bird: Carla Snijders Flower seller/assistant: Aimee Els Mean girl/jail bird: Tiana van den Berg Flasher/jail bird: Nayla Walker Norma/jail bird: Anne Liebenberg Jenny/jail bird: Cloe Loots Blanche/council mom: Loche Mong

2023: Performed as Hairspray The Musical by pupils of the Parktown High School for Girls

2023: Performed at the Savoy Theatre in Port Elizabeth by the Port Elizabeth Gilbert and Sullivan Society, 20 September 2023 - 07 October 2023.[3]


Nelson Mandela Bay Tourism website[4]

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