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New Kids at the Barre: Ali Rasul and Francesca Mango Join West End Billy Elliot

New Kids at the Barre: Ali Rasul and Francesca Mango Join West End Billy Elliot
Ali Rasul

A pair of child actors have joined the long-running West End hit Billy Elliot, which recently entered its ninth year at the Victoria Palace Theatre.

Ali Rasul, age 12, from Hartlepool will alternate in the titular role of Billy with continuing stars Tade Beisinger, Harrison Dowzell and Redmance Rance. Northumberland native Francesca Mango, 14, will alternate as Debbie alongside cast members Dayna Dixon and Millie Thornton.

The adult cast stars Anna-Jane Casey as Mrs. Wilkinson, Deka Walmsley as Billy’s Dad and Kevin Wathen as Tony, alongside an ensemble that includes Zach Atkinson, Joe Massey, Thomas Moore, Howard Crossley, Alexander Loxton, Kay Milbourne, Simon Ray Harvey, Ann Emery, Craig Armstrong, David Bardsley, Paul Basleigh, Claudia Bradley, Spencer Cartwright, Lucinda Collins, Matthew Dale, Gillian Elisa, Helen French, Lee Hoy, Ruri James, Dean Maynard, Alan Mehdizadeh, David Muscat, Ryan O’Gorman, Steve Paget, Charlotte Riby, Edmund Shaw, Spencer Stafford and Mike Scott.

Billy Elliot tells the inspirational story of one boy's passion for dance. Based on the Oscar-nominated film and set in the North East of England during the miner's strike of 1984, the show centers on Billy, who must pursue his dancing dreams in secret as he faces overwhelming odds and the disapproval of his struggling family.

The musical has been running at the Victoria Palace Theatre since 2005, having been seen by over 4 million people in the West End. The West End production was nominated for nine Olivier Awards, winning four, including Best New Musical. The Broadway production, which opened in 2008 at the Imperial Theatre, went on to win 10 Tony Awards.

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