Hairspray to close early – cast given notice understands that the Sydney season of Hairspray will ‘stop the beat’ earlier than originally anticipated.

Hairspray understands that the Sydney season of Hairspray will ‘stop the beat’ earlier than originally anticipated. 

The all-new Australian production of Hairspray (directed by David Atkins and choreographed by Jason Coleman) will turn off it’s LCD screens for the final time on September 25, 2011 – two weeks ahead of schedule. It is understood that the cast were notified of the amended closing date this week. Recently, Hairspray had announced that the show was expecting to continue performances until Sunday October 9, 2011. 

Press notes from the original closing notice read: “Touring options are being considered and strong interest is shown from overseas producers for international productions of David Atkins’ spectacular production”.  

Hairspray was nominated for 7 Helpmann Awards at the 2011 ceremony, including Best Musical. The production received praise for it’s fresh approach, and was lauded for its innovative new design concept which included the use of six LED video screens, each weighing in excess of 4 tonnes. 

Troy Dodds, in his review of the show said:

“Such technology has been tried on a lesser scale before and not worked, and it does have the potential to threaten the integrity of theatre at a traditional level, but in this case, it works wonderfully well; and takes the modern musical to a whole new technological world. Hairspray has now set the mark for others to reach.”

In a recent interview with, Trevor Ashley (currently playing Edna Turnblad) cited competition with other major productions as a possible cause for the declining audience numbers. 

“It’s had to compete with both Jersey Boys and Mary Poppins. It’s been a long time since Sydney has had three big musicals running at the same time,” Ashley said.   

Despite celebrating their 300th show recently (see picture, right), unfortunately this production has not managed to stay afloat in what has been described as a ‘flooded musical theatre market’ in Sydney this year. Hopefully the show will have life after Sydney in an international touring production – as the song says “You can’t stop the beat!”. But with less than 3 weeks until closing, if you want to see this show, you will need to get in quick.

To purchase tickets to see Hairspray at the Lyric Theatre, Sydney, click here


Related Articles:

Hairspray – Fun Facts Feature! 

Hairspray Review: New Design Concept Lights The Way 

Oh Captain, My Captain: Interview with Hairspray’s dance captain, Kirby Burgess 

An Interview with the talented Trevor Ashley 

Hairspray Will Close in Sydney – International tour being considered 

Jaz and Tracy – The Perfect Fit

Hairspray reaches another milestone 

Erin James

Erin James is's former Editor in Chief and a performer on both stage and screen. Credits include My Fair Lady, South Pacific and The King and I (Opera Australia), Love Never Dies and Cats (Really Useful Group), Blood Brothers (Enda Markey Presents), A Place To Call Home (Foxtel/Channel 7) and the feature film The Little Death (written and directed by Josh Lawson).

Erin James

One thought on “Hairspray to close early – cast given notice

  • i guess if we wanted to see all the dancers off so you think we would have watched the tv show… there was a reason it got cancelled. get some fresh faces there must be ore out there.


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