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Wednesday, 10 June 2020

New series IN THE WINGS launches with performances and interviews

In conversation with Olivier award-winning composer Richard Thomas, featuring live performances by Dougie Carter (Les Misérables; Sunset Boulevard), Aaron Lee Lambert (Hamilton; Miss Saigon; Sweeney Todd), Steph Parry (Mamma Mia; 42nd Street) and Laura Pick (Wicked; The Sound of Music).

Filmed from 3rd June - 6th June 2020 in strict accordance with social distancing guidelines. 

In The Wings is a series of human interest interviews and live entertainment hosted in a London theatre, with composers, writers, and creatives of shows that have been postponed due to COVID-19. 

In the first step towards theatre’s return, In The Wings aims to shine a light on the shows directly affected by the industry’s shutdown and celebrate the work of those composers and writers. Featuring a line-up of stellar West End stars, each episode will feature the FIRST LIVE PERFORMANCES in a theatre with a LIVE BAND since the West End closed.

Episodes will air from this Friday 12th June 2020 at 7:30p.m. and thereafter at the same time each week. Olivier award-winning composer Richard Thomas (Jerry Springer: The Opera; Made in Dagenham) will be joined by creatives from 4 upcoming new musicals that were postponed due to Coronavirus: No Limits; Legends of Arahma; Gretel! and Dorian: A Rock Musical. 

Wednesday, 15 April 2020

The Corona Diaries: Steph Parry

These recent times have been some of the hardest challenges we've faced and as a community, it hit us pretty hard. However during these difficult times, here at Pocket Size Theatre, we wanted to spread a little positivity and share some peoples experiences because we are all in this together. Each day we'll be speaking to our friends in the industry to share their experiences with you all so take a read and see how people are getting through these hard times.

Let's stick together, share the love and get through this as a community!
*Some information mentioned in this article may be out of date due to the progress of the current situation. Please keep that in mind when reading*

Steph Parry is currently playing Kate in Mamma Mia! The Party. Her other credits include Dorothy Brock in 42nd Street (Theatre Royal Drury Lane); Donna in Mamma Mia! (RCCL/Littlestar); cover Madame Morrible/Ensemble in Wicked (Apollo Victoria); Mrs Meers in Thoroughly Modern Millie (The Landor); standby Tanya/Rosie in Mamma Mia! (International Tour); cover Tanya/Donna/Rosie/ensemble in Mamma Mia! (Novello); cover Mrs Wilkinson/ Dead Mam/ensemble in Billy Elliot (Victoria Palace); Rosalind in As You Like It (UK Tour); Desdemona in Othello (Lakeside Arts Theatre, Nottingham); cover Star To Be/ensemble in Annie (UK Tour); Anybody’s in West Side Story (Larnaca Amphitheatre, Cyprus); Laurey in Oklahoma! (Broadway Theatre) and cover Babe/ensemble in The Pajama Game (The Union Theatre).

On Monday 16th March 2020, The Society of London Theatre announced the closure of all Theatres in London. This followed suit with regional venues. Where were you when you found out and what was your initial reaction? 

I was at home as it was my night off and I’d just got out of the shower to a message from my mate about the shows closing. My first reaction was one of shock. I don’t think I believed it was really happening. We didn’t hear about Mamma Mia! The Party closing until the next night and I can’t quite believe we played our last show on that Sunday for a little while without knowing. 

Can you tell us anything productive you’ve been doing? 

I’m trying to be as productive as possible without putting myself under too much pressure. I feel like we, as actors, can sometimes spend our lives rushing around London, cramming audition material, working on scenes for class and meeting up with people and suddenly the world has forced us to stop. So I do want to take time to be at home and enjoy being with my husband at home. However, I am reading a lot of acting books, doing the odd Instagram Live (as well as the “Leave a Light On” gig I did the other week which was the most fun) and training every day. I’m also offering out Q&A’s to students who are feeling a little overwhelmed and I’m about to record a gig for a care home which I’ll be offering out to any others who might want it for some entertainment.

Friday, 24 August 2018

DREAM CASTING: 9 to 5 the Musical

Violet Newstead | Steph Parry 

Judy Bernly | Cassidy Janson 


Thursday, 16 August 2018

FEATURE: When understudies save the day!

Understudies are a vital part of what keeps shows all across the world going every night. Over the past few years, we've had stories all over the press about understudies taking on lead roles in extreme circumstances and absolutely smashing it. Here are just a few of the recent stories we love (All with happy endings!), we'd like to thank these performers for not only being amazing but also taking the time to chat to us briefly for this article. And make sure to check out the bottom of the page with a breakdown of the past understudies who are astounding audiences all across the UK every night! 

Jennifer Caldwell 

When sickness hits a cast, sometimes dramatic solutions have to happen! Knights of the Rose, a new musical running at the Arts Theatre, had a wave of sickness in the cast and when an understudy is already covering someone else, whats happens?! Jennifer Caldwell was working in the Box Office and was asked for help from the Producer, she agreed to go on at 7pm and by 7.30pm was on stage! 

"When the producer asked if I could possibly step up and perform in the show I was, I think it's safe to say, apprehensive, however, adrenaline and excitement took over pretty quickly. 

The company I had around me are some of the most talented people you could ever meet which could have made things pretty daunting, but, everyone was incredibly supportive and made it so easy to slot in to the show. I couldn't wish for a better group of people to be around."

She has now been made a permanent member of the cast and features as a swing. 

"I think, as performers, we should always be willing to accept any challenge as, in such an unpredictable industry, you never know if this kind of opportunity could arise again."

Steph Parry

Steph recently finished playing Donna in Mamma Mia on the Royal Caribbean before landing the role of the standby for Dorothy Black and Maggie Jones in 42nd Street at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane. She was called upon when Mamma Mia (at the Novello Theatre) needed someone to step in mid show for the lead role, Donna, when the understudy suffered a serious injury. 

"It was such a surreal night, there was a moment just before I stepped out onstage where I thought “what the hell am I about to do?!” But I walked out to such a huge cheer from the audience that I instantly knew they were behind me and it felt so awesome!" 

She completed the show to great acclaim and was promoted from stand by to lead as Dorothy Black in 42nd Street.

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

DREAM CASTING: Mean Girls the Musical

Charlotte Wakefield as Cady Heron 

Fresh from her run as Polly Baker in the UK tour of Crazy for You, we'd love to see Wakefield belt out those songs as Cady Heron! 

Jodie Steele as Regina George

She has the sass and she has the voice! After seeing her blow the roof off in Heathers the Musical at The Other Palace, we think Jodie would be the perfect Regina for the London production!

Thursday, 1 September 2016

WICKED 10: Steph Parry

Firstly, tell us what part you played and what year(s) you were in the company! 
I was in the ensemble (you may have spotted me as the midwife) and understudied Madame Morrible. 

Do you remember seeing WICKED for the first time? When and where was it?
Yep! January 2007.  My boyfriend at the time bought me a ticket for Christmas as I was literally OBSESSED with the music.  

Did you ever think you’d be in the show one day?
Yes, I did.  I remember listening to the soundtrack over and over again in 2005 and KNOWING that I'd be a part of it one day. 

What is your best memory from your time at WICKED?
Getting thrown on day two to play Madame Morrible - pretty crazy but great fun too.  
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