Olivier winner Ruthie Henshall is to join the London cast of Billy Elliot the Musical as Billy’s dance teacher Mrs Wilkinson. Henshall will begin performances May 12 on the ninth anniversary of the world premiere at the Victoria Palace Theatre. Chris Grahamson and Barnaby Meredith will also board the production in May as Billy’s brother Tony and Older Billy respectively.
Henshall has starred on Broadway in Putting It Together, Chicago and Miss Saigon. Other stage credits include The Woman in White, Peggy Sue Got Married, Marguerite, Les Misérables, Oliver, Crazy For You and Cats. She won the Olivier for her starring role in She Loves Me. Her TV credits include The Case, Curb Your Enthusiasm, The Sound of Musicals, Law and Order and The Mysteries of 71st Street. Henshall was a judge on ITV’s Dancing on Ice.
Along with Henshall, Grahmson and Meredith, from May 12 the cast will comprise of Deka Walmsley as Dad, Ann Emery as Grandma, Howard Crossley as George, Claudia Bradley as Dead Mum and David Muscat as Mr. Braithwaite. The role of Billy is alternated by Elliott Hanna, Bradley Perret, Redmand Rance and Mitchell Tobin. Zach Atkinson, Zak Baker and Freddie play the role of Billy’s best friend Michael. Dayna Dixon, Demi Lee and Millie Thornton play Debbie.
Directed by Stephen Daldry and featuring music by Elton John and a book and lyrics by Lee Hall, Billy Elliot is based on the Oscar nominated film and is an inspiring story of one boy’s dream to know his ambitions against the odds. Set in the North East of England alongside the backdrop of the historic 1984-85 miners’ strike, Billy follows his passion for dance in secret to evade disapproval from his struggling family.