Brisbane – Your prayers have been answered

The most heavenly of musicals, Sister Act, starring Casey Donovan, Genevieve Lemon and Rhonda Burchmore, will debut at QPAC in Brisbane from February.

In the biggest role of her career to date, Casey Donovan will lead the cast in as Deloris Van Cartier, the role made famous by Whoopi Goldberg in the hit film.Joining Casey in donning the habit will be the much-loved Genevieve Lemon in the role of Mother Superior and Rhonda Burchmore as choir leader Sister Mary Lazarus.

Disco diva Deloris’ life takes a surprising turn when she witnesses a murder. Placed under protective custody she is hidden in the one place she shouldn’t be found – a convent! Encouraged to help the struggling choir, she helps her fellow sisters find their true voices as she unexpectedly rediscovers her own.

Based on the iconic film starring Whoopi Goldberg and featuring original music by Tony and 8-time Oscar award-winner Alan Menken (Disney’s Aladdin, Enchanted, The Little Mermaid), and songs inspired by Motown, soul and disco, this heavenly musical is joyous and uplifting in equal measures.

Casey Donovan and Genevieve Lemon in Sister Act the Musical

Casey Donovan is one of Australia’s most versatile entertainers, making her mark not only as a musician, but also in the areas of stage, screen, presenting and writing.  She is a multi-award winner and nominee, including Deadly Awards, ARIA #1 Award, Double & Triple Platinum selling recording artist and has starred in theatrical productions including The Sapphires, The Flowerchildren, Opera Yarrabah, As You Like It, Rent, We Will Rock You, Chicago, 9 TO 5 The Musical and & Juliet.

On screen from the age of 16, Casey was the youngest winner of Australian Idol and has since appeared in the TV series StreetSmart, How To Stay Married, What Does Australia Really Think? and crowned Queen of the Jungle in I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here.

Genevieve Lemon has appeared in many premiere Australian productions in a 40-plus year career including Steaming, Steel Magnolias, Seventeen, Miracle City, Priscilla, Queen of the Desert and Billy Elliot, which she also played in the West End (UK). Other performances include Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, Death of a Salesman, Summer Rain, The Venetian Twins, Summer of the 17th Doll and North by Northwest.

Screen performances include Sweetie, The Piano, Top of the Lake and The Power of the Dog (among others with Jane Campion); Ticket to Paradise, Colin from Accounts, Prisoner, Here Out West, The Dressmaker, Suburban Mayhem, Rake, The Tourist, Acute Misfortune, Population 11 and the upcoming feature film Runt.Awards won include Helpmann, Green Room and Sydney Theatre Critics awards for Best Actress in a Musical for Billy Elliot and Best Actress in a Feature Film from the Sydney Film Critics’ Circle for Sweetie.

From Sydney to London’s West End and the depths of the South African jungle, Rhonda Burchmore had endeared herself in the hearts of all Australians. Rhonda’s favourite stage credits range from Hairspray to Hot Shoe Shuffle and include Mamma Mia, the Drowsy Chaperone, Mame and numerous others. Rhonda performed on the West End in Sugar Babies featuring Mickey Rooney and Ann Miller and Stop The World I Want To Get Off with Anthony Newley.

Her screen credits include I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here, a lead recurring role in Channel Seven’s sitcom Fam Time, Hey Hey It’s Saturday, The Don Lane Show, The Midday Show, GMA with Bert Newton, Spicks and Specks, Carols in the Domain and Carols by Candlelight. She has also appeared as a guest on Kath & Kim and Nine Network’s Love Child. Rhonda made her film debut in the role of Kate in The Pirate Movie and more recently as Cheryl in The Wedding Party. Rhonda has recorded five albums including last year’s topical release, A Red Hot Swingin’ Christmas with ABC Records.

The creative team behind Sister Act includes Alan Menken (Music), Glenn Slater (Lyrics), Cheri and Bill Steinkellner (Book), Bill Buckhurst (Director), Alistair David (Choreographer), Morgan Large (Set & Costume Design), Stephen Brooker (Musical Supervision), Tim Mitchell (Lighting Design) and Tom Marshall (Sound Design).

Genevieve Lemon in Sister Act the Musical. Photo by Benny Capp.

Composer Alan Menken’s music, songs and scores have become an integral part of the fabric of our lives since his first works were produced nearly 40 years ago. His chart-topping songs have included Beauty and the Beast, A Whole New World, Colours of the Wind and Go the Distance. His stage musicals include God Bless You, Mr Rosewater, Atina: Evil Queen of the Galaxy, Real Life Funnies, Little Shop of Horrors, Kicks, The Dream on Royal Street, Beauty and the Beast, A Christmas Carol, Weird Romance, King David, The Little Mermaid, Sister Act, Leap of Faith, Newsies, Aladdin, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz, A Bronx Tale and Hercules.

Song and score credits for film musicals include: The Little Mermaid (animated), Beauty and the Beast (animated), Newsies, Aladdin (animated), The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Hercules, The Shaggy Dog, Home on the Range, Enchanted, Tangled, Mirror Mirror, Beauty and the Beast (live action), Howard, Aladdin (live action), Disenchanted (live action), The Little Mermaid (live action).

He is the winner of eight Oscars, with four for Best Score and four for Best Song and holds the distinction of having won more Academy Awards than any other living individual. Other notable awards include 11 Grammy Awards, seven Golden Globes, a Daytime Emmy Award, a Tony for Best Original Musical Score (Newsies), an Olivier Award, three Outer Critics Circle Awards and two Drama Desk Awards. His 2021 Emmy win elevated him to EGOT status, as the 16th person ever to receive an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony award.

A musical sent from above, Sister Act is the brilliant, must-see show which raises the spirits and warms the soul time after time. Nominated for five Tony Awards, including Best Musical, as well as a total of six Olivier Award nominations across the original West End season and the London revival season. Sister Act also made a triumphant return to London’s West End in March 2024.

Further casting announcements will be made in the coming weeks.

Peter J Snee

Peter is a British born creative, working in the live entertainment industry. He holds an honours degree in Performing Arts and has over 12 years combined work experience in producing, directing and managing artistic programs & events. Peter has traversed the UK, Europe and Australia pursuing his interest in theatre. He is inspired by great stories and passionately driven by pursuing opportunities to tell them.

Peter J Snee

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