It’s officially September and on the 10th of this month, something BIG is making its way to London’s Dominion Theatre. That’s right, Big the Musical will be making it West End debut and will run for a limited period until November 2.
The musical had its UK premiere in Plymouth and Dublin back in 2016 and cast a spell on tons of theatregoers, including us here at CelebMix. Now, three years on, the show is set to be bigger and better than ever before and we can’t wait to step into Josh Baskin’s world once more, with Jay McGuiness returning as the lead, alongside Kimberley Walsh, Matthew Kelly and Wendi Peters.
If you need convincing, here’s five reasons why you need to go and see Big the Musical.
1. It’s based on the classic Tom Hanks movie
Released in 1988, Big became a huge hit, gaining universal acclaim and grossing over $151 million worldwide. The movie tells the story of 12-year-old Josh Baskin who’s wish is ‘to be big’. After being told he’s too short to go on a ride during a local carnival, he makes a wish on a Zoltar machine. To his surprise and horror, when he wakes up the next morning he has transformed into an adult and must go about navigating life as a 12-year-old boy trapped in a grown man’s body.
The family movie is both hilarious and heartwarming, with the storyline and characters lending themselves well to an on stage musical. With the addition of a great score, there’s no doubt that Big the Musical will be enchanting the West End over the coming weeks.
2. It will include THAT iconic scene
One word. PIANO. Yep, Jay McGuiness (Josh Baskin) and Matthew Kelly (MacMillan) will be taking on the legendary floor piano during the show, a scene which has been etched in our memories since watching the movie growing up. We cannot wait to see the pair have fun with it (although we’re slightly jealous that we can’t have a go ourselves).
3. It has a phenomenal soundtrack
The Big the Musical soundtrack has everything you could ever want from a musical. From gorgeous ballads such as ‘We’re Gonna Be Fine’ to foot-tapping anthems like ‘Cross The Line’, the soundtrack is a glorious listen from start to finish. Rumour has it that the West End production might also feature some new songs, which we’re more than excited for!
Listen to the original UK cast recording from 2016 below.
4. The star-studded cast includes theatre royalty
The principal cast includes household names who hold an array of theatre credits between them. Former Girls Aloud star and Strictly Come Dancing contestant Kimberley Walsh will be playing Susan Lawrence, and over the years she notched up several stage credits including Shrek the Musical, Elf the Musical and Sweet Charity. Wendi Peters, who will be playing Josh Baskin’s mum, is best known for portraying Cilla Battersby-Brown in Coronation Street but is also a theatre regular, having appeared in numerous stage plays and musicals. We also have Olivier Award-winning Matthew Kelly as George MacMillan – whilst we know him best as the host of Stars in Your Eyes, he has appeared in a range of productions including Of Mice and Men.
5. Jay McGuiness is the perfect Josh Baskin
Of course, we couldn’t talk about Big the Musical without mentioning its leading man, Jay McGuiness. Best known as one fifth of The Wanted, as well as Strictly Come Dancing champion 2015, most recently Jay has been flexing his fancy footwork in the West End as part of the Rip it Up the 60’s production. Now he will be returning to the role of Josh Baskin in Big the Musical and having seen him play the character before, take our word for it when we say that Jay most definitely lives up to the expectations set by Tom Hanks in the original movie.
During the UK run, Jay perfectly embodied the childlike nature of the role and captured our hearts with his incredible portrayal. Now with West End experience under his belt thanks to Rip It Up the 60’s, there’s no doubt that Jay will be an even stronger leading man, and we cannot wait to be swept up into the magical world of Big once more with him at the helm.