Anne Tonks
ANNE TONKS from Bradford plays the Mother Abbess
Anne’s first principal role was at the age of nine when she played a China Girl in The Belle of New York with Bradford Amateurs at the Alhambra Theatre. Six years later, she joined Buttershaw St Paul’s AODS to play the title role in the world amateur premiere of Charlie Girl. Buttershaw has remained Anne’s home society ever since – she has played many leading roles there, has directed the junior show for the last twenty years, and is now the society’s Chairman.
Anne has appeared with many societies in and around Bradford, Halifax, Keighley and Bingley, but has never ventured into Leeds until now.
Favourite roles to date have been her namesakes – Anna (The King and I), Anna (The Merry Widow) and Annie (Annie Get Your Gun). She has played Mabel three times in the Broadway version of The Pirates of Penzance, and more recently Dolly Levi in Hello, Dolly! twice.
Christine Castle
CHRISTINE CASTLE from Leeds plays Frau Schmidt
Christine has been involved in theatre from a very young age! Notable credits for Leeds Thespians - Tzeitel (Fiddler on the Roof), Claudine (Can-Can), Dorothy Brock (42nd Street); for The Potato Room Players - Reno (Anything Goes), Rose (Gypsy), Jacqueline (La Cage Aux Folles with Danny La Rue); for Idle & Thackley AOS - Dolly (Hello, Dolly!), Anna (The King and I), Mame (Mame), Golde (Fiddler on the Roof) - a part she has reprised five times with other companies; for Yeadon AODS – Dolly (Hello, Dolly!), Muzzie (Thoroughly Modern Millie), Madame Arcati (Blithe Spirit) for which she received the Best Supporting Actress Award at the 2012 Wharfedale Festival; for LAOS - Yente (Fiddler on the Roof), General Cartwright (Guys and Dolls).
Christine has recently formed a new group, The Swan Street Theatre Company, bringing musicals back to the City Varieties. She directed their first production, Jerry Herman’s Showtune last October.
Darren Roberts
DARREN ROBERTS from Whixley, York plays Captain Georg von Trapp
Darren started his professional acting career with the National Theatre, having graduated from Arts Education Drama School in London in the early nineties in his debut play At Our Table at the National's Cottesloe. He moved on to work with the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford and the Barbican in Measure for Measure, the world premiere of After Easter and A Midsummer Night’s Dream,which culminated in a number one tour of the States and a transfer to Broadway. He has also appeared with the RSC at the Young Vic in the world premiere of Zenobia by Nick Dear. His other theatre credits include the UK tour of A Christmas Carol with Christopher Biggins and the premiere of Disney's Aladdin at the Odeon Leicester Square.
Darren’s television credits include Peak Practice, This is Personal, The Hunt for the Yorkshire Ripper, Blue Murder and Crime Watch.
Since moving back to his native Yorkshire, Darren has worked with many amateur theatre groups, playing major roles in many musicals and plays around the area. He has enjoyed the success of his own theatre school for young people and works with several schools in Yorkshire as a drama specialist.
Jennifer Burrows
JENNIFER BURROWS from Halifax plays Maria Rainer
From the age of three, Jennifer trained at Dorothy Stevens School of Dance and she has performed in many musical theatre productions throughout her life.
Jennifer was last involved with LAOS when she played Anita in West Side Story at the West Yorkshire Playhouse in 2006.
Jennifer’s life then took a slight turn as she was awarded a BBC Musical Theatre Bursary after gaining a place at Maria School in the BBC’s How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria?. She went on to train at Guildford School of Acting and then toured the UK with Fiddler on the Roof, played the title role in Cinderella and performed at the BBC Prom celebrating Sondheim’s 80th Birthday.
Now happily settled in Yorkshire, Jennifer is very much looking forward to finally playing Maria.
Favourite roles include: Peggy Sawyer in 42nd Street (St George’s Hall, Bradford and Victoria Theatre, Halifax); Carrie in Carousel and Lady Jacqueline in Me and My Girl (St George’s Hall, Bradford); Cassie in A Chorus Line and Anne Egerman in A Little Night Music (Guildford School of Acting); Bianca in Kiss Me, Kate, Val in A Chorus Line and the title role in Sweet Charity (University of Durham).
Martha Henry
MARTHA-FRANCES HENRY from Leeds plays Liesl
Martha is currently a sixth form student at The Morley Academy, studying Drama, Dance, Music and Psychology. Since 2010, she has attended Scala Performing Arts in Horsforth and has trained with The Martinicca Theatre School since the age of four. Martha’s first show, aged nine, was Musical Extravanganza with Morley Amateur Operatic Society. With Wakefield Youth Music Theatre, Martha has played Eponine in Les Misérables, Tina in She Loves You! Yeah!, Gloria/Alex understudy in Flashdance and is soon to be originating the role of Carla in a brand new show, What’s the Buzz?. She has also just finished playing Meat in The Morley Academy’s production of We Will Rock You.
Rachel Aston
RACHEL ASTON from Pontefract plays Elsa Schraeder
Rachel has been singing and dancing from a young age, having made her theatrical debut as a rat in ‘The Pied Piper of Hamlyn’, aged three! After training with the Leydon Smith School of Theatre Dance, she appeared in numerous productions including Witness for the Prosecution (Agatha Christie Theatre Company), The Producers, The King and I, and Guys and Dolls (LAOS), Smike and Little Shop of Horrors.
Previous principal roles include Sandy (Grease), Dolly (Gumshoe), Joanie (The Full Monty) and more recently, Tzeitel in Fiddler on the Roof with LAOS at the West Yorkshire Playhouse.
Rachel’s passion for gospel music led her to become president of the Warwick University gospel choir ‘Revelation’ when reading Psychology, performing extensively with the choir both regionally and nationally. An interest in radio took her to Kenya in 2012 where she was presenter of The Sunset Show for Fish FM Radio.
Mike Porter
MIKE PORTER from Pontefract plays Max Detweiler
Mike joined LAOS to play the part of Frederick in The Pirates of Penzance in 1987, having previously been with Kippax AOS, where he played numerous principal roles, including Sky Masterson in Guys and Dolls. Since joining LAOS, he has played many leading principal roles with us, including Henry Higgins in My Fair Lady (2001), Julian Marsh in 42nd Street (2003), Horace Vandergelder in Hello, Dolly! (2004) and Father in Ragtime (2007), all at the Grand Theatre. At the West Yorkshire Playhouse, he played Pilate in Jesus Christ Superstar (2005), The Beadle in Sweeney Todd (2008), Cpt Brackett in South Pacific (2011), Big Jule in Guys and Dolls (2012) and, one of his favourite roles, Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof (2010).
Jonathan Lancaster
JOHNNY HIRST from Halifax plays Franz
Johnny first took to the stage at the age of six in junior pantomimes for Buttershaw St Paul’s AODS. After graduating from Newcastle University, he returned to become a member of the senior society and has gone on to play a number of roles in productions across Bradford, Halifax and Huddersfield. Recent roles include: Bill Sykes in Oliver!, Lord Evelyn Oakleigh in Anything Goes, Edwin in Summer Holiday and Harry in Brigadoon (St George's Hall, Bradford); Daniel in Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Chino in West Side Story and Steve in Summer Holiday (Lawrence Batley Theatre, Huddersfield); Bun Foo in Thoroughly Modern Millie and Action in West Side Story (Victoria Theatre, Halifax).
The Sound of Music is Johnny’s first appearance with LAOS.
--Ben Lancaster
BEN LANCASTER from Morley plays Rolf Gruber
Ben is 17 (going on 18!), and this is his first production with LAOS, as well as his first appearance at the Grand Theatre. He is currently studying at the Rachael Swann School of Dance & Renaissance Arts in Morley. He has appeared in Les Misérables, She Loves You! Yeah! and Flashdance (playing Jimmy) with Wakefield Youth Music Theatre. In school productions he has also played Valjean in Les Misérables and Galileo in We Will Rock You.
Ben is hoping to achieve a place in a West End stage school in the months ahead, to further his training in Musical Theatre.
Hammerstein Team
Hammerstein team (Wednesday/Friday/Saturday Evening):
Friedrich - Matthew Law from Pontefract
Louisa - Phoebe Tissiman from Leeds
Kurt - Joseph Robinson from Leeds
Brigitta - Abbie Roebuck from Leeds
Marta - Katie-Mae Ramsey from Wakefield
Gretl - Mia Speight from Leeds
Rodgers Team
Rodgers team (Tuesday/Thursday/ Saturday Matinee):
Friedrich - Daniel Nattrass from Leeds
Louisa - Eleanor Hemingway from Leeds
Kurt - Aaron Cawood from Dewsbury
Brigitta - Molly-Anne Alston from Pontefract
Marta - Rebecca Mayson from Wakefield
Gretl - Charlotte Carr from Leeds
Frank Appleyard
FRANK APPLEYARD from Leeds plays Herr Zeller
Louise Norbury
LOUISE NORBURY from Leeds plays Sister Berthe
Nicky Burrows
NICKY BURROWS from Leeds plays Sister Sophia
Nicole Connor
Nicole Connor from Leeds plays Sister Margaretta
Robert Atkinson
Robert Atkinson from Leeds plays Admiral Von Schreiber