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Hair - guest appearances from original stars Tobias and Nicholas

Oliver Tobias and Paul Nicholas, original stars of Hair.

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

OLIVER Tobias and Paul Nicholas, two of the original stars of Hair, will make guest appearances in this celebrity-packed fundraiser performance of the musical, which comes to the West End’s Piccadilly Theatre on Sunday, July 1 to support the Help For Heroes charity.

Tobias was the original Berger and Nicholas played Claude when the show premiered in the West End in 1968.

Hair Gallery

Previously Posted: On July 1, 2012, for one night only, Gary Lloyd is bringing his acclaimed production of the Broadway rock musical, Hair, to the Piccadilly Theatre.

A celebrity-packed fundraiser, Lloyd’s production that enjoyed a sold-out season in Europe, comes to London to support the Help For Heroes charity.

Hair tells the story of Claude, a hippie living a life of self exploration, meditation, peace and most certainly love. He and his tribe resist the looming draft and spend much of their time in passionate protest against the Vietnam war and for human rights, equality and freedom.

Set in New York City in 1967, audiences join Claude and the tribe as they introduce their world through some of the most infectious songs ever written for musical theatre – songs such as Aquarius, I Got Life, Let The Sun Shine In and Good Morning Starshine.

The cast is headed by Zoe Birkett (Pop Idol finalist, Priscilla Queen of the Desert The Musical, Palace Theatre, Thriller Live, Lyric Theatre) as Dionne; George Maguire (Thrill Me, Marc Bolan in 20th Century Boy) as Berger; and Amy Diamond (Over the Rainbow finalist, Sue in Dreamboats and Petticoats) as Sheila.

Gary Lloyd, director and choreographer of Thriller – Live and the just-announced Top of the Pops LIVE stage show, said:

“I am very proud to be putting on this event in support of such an amazing and relevant charity. Hair has become a part of all our lives and discovering what these people went through has been a mindblowing journey of discovery. The issues that arise within the piece are still hugely prevalent today so since it was created, there has never been a better time to do Hair.

“The Help For Heroes charity do amazing work and we are honoured to be a part of supporting them with such an incredible piece. This also promises to be the most exciting night in the theatrical calendar so far this year!”

Hair premiered Off-Broadway in October 1967 and ran for 1,750 performances. It subsequently opened at the Shaftesbury Theatre in London on September 27, 1968 with the same creative team as the Broadway production.

The opening night was, in fact, delayed until the abolition of theatre censorship in England under the Theatres Act 1968. The original London tribe included Sonja Kristina, Paul Nicholas, Melba Moore, Elaine Paige, Paul Korda, Marsha Hunt, Floella Benjamin, Alex Harvey, Oliver Tobias, Richard O’Brien and Tim Curry.

Hair‘s London run surpassed the Broadway production, running for 1,997 performances until its closure was forced by the roof of the theatre collapsing in July 1973.

With a book and lyrics by James Rado and Gerome Ragni and music by Galt MacDermot, Hair remains one of the most successful rock shows ever. It does, of course, feature an infamous nude scene that pushed the boundaries of what was acceptable on stage; and a political message that resonates as much today as it did in the 60s.

Tickets: from £50 – available from the box office on 08448 717630 or online at
www.atgtickets.com/hair-support-help-for-heroes/10/3474/.

Time: 7.30pm. VIP reception from 6pm.