Andrew Rannells Will Star in Tammy Faye Bakker Musical From Elton John and Jake Shears


Andrew Rannells | Photo: Rebecca J. Michelson

Dan Meyer
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August 23, 2022 8:51 AM

God bless! Tony nominee Andrew Rannells will star opposite Oliver winner Katie Brayben in the world premiere of Tammy Faye at the Almeida in London. As if the star-studded casting wasn’t enough, the musical features a score by Elton John and Scissor Sisters’ frontman Jake Shears.

Tammy Faye follows the trials and tribulations of America’s evangelist sweetheart as she tries to make the world a better place. Previews begin October 13 with an opening night set for October 26.

Featuring a book by Ink playwright James Graham and directed by Rupert Gould, Tammy Faye also features choreography by Lynne Page, set design by Bunny Christie, costume designer by Katrina Lindsay, lighting designer by Neil Austin, sound designer by Bobby Aitken, musical supervision by Tom Deering, orchestrations by Deering and Mark Dickman, video designer by Finn Ross, musical direction by Oli Jackson, and casting by Pippa Ailion and Natalie Gallacher.

Joining Brayben in the title role and Rannells as Jim, the cast features Olivier nominee Zubin Varla as Jerry Falwell. Rounding out the ensemble are Kelly Agbowu, Amy Booth-Steel, Ashley Campbell, Peter Caulfield, Danny Collins, Richard Dempsey, Fred Haig, Georgia Louise, Robyn Rose, Nicholas Rowe, Martin Sarreal, Steve John Shepherd, and Gemma Sutton.

This isn’t the first musical foray for Shears—he previously wrote a musical adaptation of Tales of the City, and played Charlie Price in Kinky Boots on Broadway in 2018 for a limited engagement. That musical is currently enjoying an Off-Broadway revival at Stage 42. Elton John’s work was most recently heard in the stage adaptation of The Devil Wears Prada, which recently held its world premiere in Chicago.

Rannells was last seen on stage playing Larry in the Tony-winning Broadway revival of The Boys in the Band. He also reprised the role for the Netflix adaptation. He also starred as Trent in Netflix’s The Prom. Brayben’s West End credits include Beautiful—The Carole King Musical and Girl From the North Country.

The new Almeida season will also feature a new revival of Tennesee Williams’ A Streetcar Named Desire from the company’s associate director, Rebecca Frecknall, and starring Paul Mescal, Anjana Vasan and Lydia Wilson.

In addition, the theatre will present the world premiere of Lulu Raczka’s Women, Beware the Devil, and the U.K. premiere of The Secret Life of Bees. The latter, originally seen Off-Broadway at Atlantic Theater Company, is written by Lynn Nottage, Duncan Sheik, Susan Birkenhead, based on the best-selling novel by Sue Monk Kidd, and directed by Whitney White.

For more information about the upcoming season, click here

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Dan Meyer

After 4 years in the biz, Dan swapped out theatre for sports and is now a researcher at NBC Olympics. Spectacle remains a key passion and is dedicated to building bridges between different forms of entertainment. He has worked as a writer and editor at Theatrely and Playbill, covering Broadway and beyond. In addition, he has been published in Rolling Stone, Spy, and others.

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