Chapel off Chapel , 13-29 September 2019


About the show

Set in Northern Ireland in the troubled 1970s, THE BEAUTIFUL GAME tells the story of ordinary people in an extraordinary situation. The story is centered on a local football (soccer) team, who attempt to overcome the emerging political and religious violence that has engulfed their community. Within this are John and Mary who fall in love, but find themselves caught in the middle of a 'war' that neither of them wants.

Ben Elton’s book is told with humour and compassion, while his lyrics are both funny and heartbreaking. Andrew Lloyd Webber’s evocative score combines heart-searing ballads and stirring anthems with the sounds of Ireland. 

THE BEAUTIFUL GAME originally opened at the Cambridge Theatre in London in September 2000.  Although created almost 20 years ago, "this piece isn't really about the Irish problem but about the futility of these conflicts the world over and how they keep repeating themselves,” says Andrew Lloyd Webber. Although this is an Irish story, the themes and sentiments of THE BEAUTIFUL GAMEare universal. All over the world communities are challenged by violence and hatred.

According to producer/director Karen Jemison, “what drew me to this show is the powerful story. What these characters go through as teenagers is both shocking and heart breaking and because the show plays out against the real struggles of Northern Ireland at that time, it makes the story even more poignant.”  

“I enjoy producing musicals that audiences haven’t seen before and THE BEAUTIFUL GAME is a real treat. If you combine a powerful story with a beautiful Andrew Lloyd Webber score, you’ve got a fabulous show!” 

THE BEAUTIFUL GAMEis an intelligent, touching and thought provoking musical that will have you leaving the theatre with much to talk about and reflect on. It has been described as Northern Irish WEST SIDE STORY.

THE SUNDAY TIMES: Andrew Lloyd Webber "romps home with his best work since Cats and his finest piece of musical theatre ever".

THE DAILY TELEGRAPH: "The music includes some of Lloyd Webber's most haunting and memorable ballads."

meet the cast of the beautiful game

Stephen Mahy - John


Stephen graduated from WAAPA in 2006 and was already cast by Louise Withers and associates in Cameron Mackintosh’s Miss Saigon Australian tour in 2007-2008. Throughout 2008 Stephen performed in starring roles for The Production CO in Follies, Guy Nobles Karaoke the musical and for the Kookaburra theatre co in Little Women. From 2009-2011 Stephen was honoured to step into the shoes of Bob Gaudio in the original Australian cast tour of Jersey Boys. Late in 2012 Stephen landed in the top 12 of channel 10’s I will Survive and took the bus all the way from Sydney to Alice springs. A trip of a lifetime he’ll never forget. In 2013 he was in Spank, the Fifty Shades of Grey parody before donning the leather jacket to play Kenickie in Grease produced by the Gordon Frost Organisation. Following that tour in 2015 he played Brad Majors in The Rocky Horror Show and most recently was seen on the Greek islands as Sky in Mamma Mia! 2017/2018 Australian tour and playing Frank Jnr in Saturday Night Fever. 

Stephanie Wall - Mary


Stephanie Wall made her professional Music Theatre debut in the 2017/18 Australian tour of The Wizard Of Ozas Dorothy cover/Ensemble. In August 2018 she was the recipient of the Rob Guest ‘Future Prospect’ Award. Stephanie graduated the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA) in 2016 with a Bachelor of Arts degree (Music Theatre). During her studies, she featured as Janet Van De Graaff in The Drowsy Chaperone, Nautica in Bring It On The Musical, and was the Dance Captain for The Beautiful Game.Stephanie is excited to be revisiting this beautiful show.  

Nicola Bowman - Bernadette


Nicola is a graduate of Music Theatre at the Victorian College of the Arts where she played Wendla in Spring Awakening in her final year. Upon graduation she was the recipient of the Ron and Margaret Dobell Foundation Music Theatre Award allowing her to study a Diploma of Classical Acting at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts in 2018. Her professional credits include Ava in The Red Tree (National Theatre of Parramatta), Bridget in Bring It On (Stage Masters), Dromio of Syracuse in Comedy of Errors (Melbourne Shakespeare Company), Deb in Ordinary Days (Pursued by Bear). She recently completed her Directing debut with Ebb Flow theatre company’s production of Blackrock. 

Des Flanagan - Thomas


Originally from Beechworth in regional Victoria, Des moved to Melbourne to follow his passion for musical theatre. During his training at the Victorian College of the Arts (VCA) Des played Edward Cleary in The Hatpin (dir. Jacinta John), an ensemble member in 42nd Street (dir. Gary Young), Benny Southstreet in the workshop project of Guys and Dolls (dir. Martin Croft) and in the graduating production of Spring Awakening (dir. Tom Healey) Des played Herr Rilow, Herr Stiefel, Herr Gabor, Dieter, ensemble and Covered Melchior. Since graduating Des has appeared on Neighbours as T-Bone and toured the educational musical Super Duper for Echelon. Most recently Des was a Swing in Opera Australia’s West Side Story on the Harbour.

Oscar Tollofsen - Daniel


Oscar Tollofsen is a Swedish born actor based in Melbourne, previously having studied and worked in London and internationally for
the past 4 years. Most recognisably Oscar was a member of the international company

of Cameron Mackintosh’s acclaimed new production of Les Misérables. He played the role of Courfeyrac and covered Enjolras in theAustralian/UK production, produced by MichaelCassel and Cameron Mackintosh, and toured to world renowned venues in Manila, Singapore and the Dubai Opera House.In London’s West End, Oscar was featured as a soloist in From Page to Stage at the Other Palace, and also played Ovington and featured in the ensemble in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying as a part of the City of London Festival at the Guildhall Great Hall. Oscar holds his postgraduate in musical theatre from the Royal Academy of Music in London. During his time at RAM he starred as Billy Bigelow in Carousel, directed by Ken Caswell, and as John
Wilkes Booth in Assassins, directed by Sam Yates. Oscar also holds a graduate diploma
in musical theatre from the Umea MusicalTheatre Academy in Sweden and is proudly represented Ian White Management.

David Meadows - Father O'Donnell


A WAAPA graduate whose career spans more than thirty years, David’s most recent stage credits include Much Ado About Nothing (Bar’d Work), Carpe Diem

(Centre Stage), Do You Know Me? (Melbourne Fringe), and Coriolanus (Burning

House). Additional theatre credits include the title roles in Doctor Faustus, Macbeth, and Hamlet, Shylock in The Merchant of Venice, Iago in Othello,

Petruccio in The Taming of the Shrew, and roles in Ghosts, The Graduate, The Canterbury Tales, A Christmas Carol, As You Like It, Romeo & Juliet, Britannicus, Shopping & F***ing, A Man of Letters, Happy End, Pericles, and Twelfth Night. Screen credits include Jack Irish, Neighbours, Blue Heelers, The Great Mint Swindle, Drift, The Holiest One, Maddalena, Zac & Me, The Sonnet Project, and DAFUQ? David is a founding member of the International Actors Ensemble, and has performed in, directed, and co-devised multi-lingual touring productions of Shakespeare in Mexico and South Korea.

Ellie Nunan - Christine


Ellie Nunan is Melbourne based, Queensland-born actress, having graduated from the Queensland Conservatorium of Music with a Bachelor of Musical Theatre in 2016. Immediately after graduating she toured South Korea and Taiwan with the international cast of CATS as a swing and Grizabella understudy during 2017/2018, and has also been seen in Flourish's Production's ON BROADWAY, Mad About Theatre's DISENCHANTED and most recently played Rosaline in Melbourne Shakespeare Company's LOVE'S LABOUR'S LOST. Ellie is also the co-creator of the political cabaret 'Julie & Julia: An Evening with the Great Women of Australian Politics', in which she plays Julie Bishop. The show enjoyed a sell-out premiere season at The Butterfly Club and was also featured on Myf Warhurst's program on ABC Radio.

Samuel Skuthorp - Ginger


Samuel is a graduate of the Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University (QCGU), Bachelor of Musical Theatre. Most Recently, Samuel performed in the 40th Anniversary Production of Sweeney Todd in the Ensemble and understudying the role of Tobias Ragg.

Since graduating he has performed the role of Oscar in The Wild Party with The Little Triangle Co., and originated the role of George Armstrong in ‘MELBA’ at the Hayes Theatre. Samuel was a soloist in the Brisbane Season of Forrester & Swan’s ‘A New Summer’ and was a Guest Soloist in QPAC’s ‘Spirit of Christmas’.

Sam Ward - Del


Sam is a 2016 graduate of the Victorian College of the Arts, where he was awarded the Cassidy Bequest Scholarship for 2015. He has recently returned from Europe and the Caribbean, performing the role of Frank, and understudying the roles of Tick and Bob in Priscilla, Queen of the Desert aboard the Norwegian Epic. In 2017, Sam made his professional debut in Jesus Christ Superstar for The Production Company, and also played the role of Marius in Les Miserables for Free-Rain Theatre Company. In the same year he was chosen as one of the top 30 finalists for the Rob Guest Endowment, where was awarded the ‘Playbill Future Prospect Award’. His other credits include Billy Lawlor in 42nd Street (Free-Rain Theatre Company), Whizzer in Falsettos (StageArt) and Ensemble/Assistant Musical Director for They’re Playing Our Song (Company Eleven).

The ensemble will feature Finn Alexander, Robbie Breugelmans, Rebecca Cullinan, Liam Dodds, Emma Drysdale, Jake Gardner, Mikey Halcrow, Quin Kelly, Sophie Loughran, Jessica Mills, Matthew Prime, Lachlan Hamill and Bronson Pfeiler 

meet the creative team

Karen Jemison - Director

Karen established Manilla Street Productions and has devised and produced numerous theatre productions receiving audience and critical acclaim.  These include the Australian premiere of Bad Blood Blues (4 Green Room Award Nominations including Best Independent Play), Blood Brothers (2 Green Room Award nominations), Pacific Overtures (8 Green Room Award Nominations including Best Musical), Victorian premiere of Sondheim on Sondheim (Recital Centre) and NINE in Concert (Recital Centre) which raised money for ThinkPink. In 2018, Karen produced and directed the first theatre show based on calisthenics, Amazing Grace which premiered at the National Theatre and will be returning in 2020 with a brand-new production.   Karen was a Laurence Olivier Award Panel judge for Musicals in the UK.  In 2019, Karen established MSP Jr and directed the company's first junior production, Annie Jr. 

Daniele Buatti - Musical Director

Daniele is a Melbourne-based accompanist, arranger and musical director who works extensively in the realms of musical theatre and cabaret. He has been the resident musical director of Melbourne’s Broadway Unplugged since it launched in 2013 which sees him leading a phenomenal band, whilst arranging and performing a vast array of repertoire for each of their monthly events. In addition to this, Daniele has had the pleasure of acting as the assistant Musical Director for Stage Art’s Hair, New Theatre’s Venetian Twins and is frequently seen playing at musical theatre auditions around Melbourne. He can also been seen teaching at schools around Melbourne such as Federation University, Patrick Studios Australia and Jason Coleman’s Ministry of Dance. Daniele is currently completing study at AIM under the tutelage of John McAll whilst working in cabarets around Australia.

Sue-Ellen Shook - Choreographer

Sue Ellen has been teaching, choreographing, and performing for 30 years, and has worked extensively in the freelance world of commercial dance. Sue trained at VCATS and was inducted in to their Hall of Fame in 2011. Film and Television Credits: Moulin Rouge (Baby Doll)- Baz Luhrman, Dancing with the Stars, Australia's got Talent-Rolling Entertainment Grand Finalist, Olympics 2000 Opening-Closing Ceremonies, Australian Film Awards, Australian TV Awards, In Melbourne Tonight. Theatre Credits: Promises, Promises (Ensemble), Menopause The Musical (Soap Star), King Kong the Musical Workshop, Sugar (Dolores), Boy From Oz (Ensemble), Time Warp A Rocky Horror Tribute (Magenta), La Soire (Lola), 42nd Street (Lorraine), Pajama Game (Brenda), Pan (Tiger Lily), Starlight Express, A Chorus Line, A Midsummer?s Night Dream, Moving Pictures, Carmen, Aida, Batman The Stunt Show. Sue's choreography credits include House Husbands, So You Think You Can Dance, Victoria's State School Spectacular, Jungle Book - A Musical Tale, Midsummer Nights Dream, Romeo and Juliet, Is There Life After High School, Motherhood the Musical and Menopause the Musical.  Resident Choreographer Australian Shakespeare Company

Jason Bovaird - Lighting Designer

Recent lighting designs and re–lights have included the highly acclaimed production of Les Miserables, We Will Rock You, Memphis-The Musical (2017 Australian Premiere), Jon English’s Paris – A Rock Odyssey (2017), The Play That Goes Wrong (Australian / NZ Tour, Lunchbox Theatricals London, 2017), The Color Purple, Antarctica - A New Musical (Theatre Royal, Hobart), Avenue Q (Her Majesty’s Theatre, Melbourne & Crown Theatre, Perth), In The Heights (2015 Australasian Premiere), Dreamgirls (Australasian Premiere) and currently the highly acclaimed London’s West End Peter Pan Goes Wring playing Australia and New Zealand in 2018/2019. Awards and nominations have included: MTGV “Best Lighting”, 2003, 2007, 2011, 2014 & 2018 for We Will Rock You. Tasmanian Theatre Awards 2015, 2016, 2017 “Best Production” Wicked (Encore Theatre Company), 2018 “Best Production” Les Miserables (Encore Theatre Company) and most recently nominated for “Best Lighting / Video” for Les Miserables for Encore Theatre Company’s 2018 production. Jason has just completed an international tour of London’s West End hit show Peter Pan Goes Wrong throughout New Zealand and Australia in 2018 and 2019. 

Mikey Halcrow - Dance Captain

Mikey made his professional Australian debut in the national tour of Wizard of Oz (GFO) as
a Swing in 2017. He has spent the last year doing the national tour of Song & Dance Men
(JTM Productions.) He graduated from WAAPA with a Bachelor of Arts Music Theatre in 2016, credits included George in The Drowsy Chaperone and Dance Captain for Bring It On. After graduating he performed his self written Donald O’Connor cabaret: “Make ‘Em Laugh” in Perth and Melbourne and was nominated for a Julie Michael Award. Before studying he was a Dance Captain and Aerialist for Royal Caribbean Cruise Line Productions for multiple contracts and also performed with circus companies including Brophy Productions and Fliptease. He is thrilled to be Dance Captain for this production and thanks his family and agents for their wonderful support.

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The Beautiful Game

Chapel off Chapel, September 2019