Burlesque the Musical announced this week that ITV’s The Voice & X-Factor – The Band Winner, Jess Folley will lead the production in the role of Ali. She is set to be joined by, Olivier Award-winning George Maguire as Vince, Billie-Kay as Sophia , B Terry as Georgie, West End favourite, and TikTok and social media sensation Jess Qualter as Daphne, Yasmin Harrison as Brenda/Dance Captain, Lily Wang as Fifi, Hollie-Ann Lowe as Summer and Alessia McDermott in the Ensemble. Further casting information is to be announced on 5 Feburary 2024.
Burlesque the Musical previews at Manchester Opera House on Thursday 13 June with sold-out performances until Saturday 29 June 2024. Due to the phenomenal success of the show, producers last week confirmed a run at Glasgow Theatre Royal from Wednesday 11 September to Saturday 28 September 2024 followed by a return season in Manchester from Thursday 3 October – Saturday 2 November 2024 prior to its West End run.
Steven Antin said: ‘I am so thrilled that we have the powerhouse that is Jess Folley taking on the iconic role of Ali Rose. She is a rare talent indeed. An incredible singer, a wonderful, instinctual actress, a spectacular songwriter…and gorgeous. Jess has also composed sensational new music for the show. Everyday I peel myself off the ceiling and ask…what did I do to deserve Jess Folley. I was gobsmacked over Xtina when she did the movie, because she had so many extraordinary talents that she brought to the film, the rare breed that she is, so the bar for me was very high. And it has come full circle with Jess. The other cast members who are creating the world of Burlesque deserve more than just a brief mention. The stakes and the bar for being in the Burlesque cast are very high. It requires a rare breed of talent and we have looked tirelessly for those special people who will populate our world. From George Maguire, to Billie-Kay, B Terry, Jess Qualter, Yasmin Harrison, Lily Wang, Hollie-Ann Lowe and Alessia McDermott and more! These artists are the creme de la creme.’
Jess Folley added: “A year ago, I was lucky enough to have the chance to compose a song for the show and fortunately for me, Steven loved it! We had a couple of calls to get to know each other, and the next thing I know he had asked me to play Ali in the workshops and then the show itself. Since then, I’ve written a number of other songs, become part of the creative team and have totally fallen in love with this project. I’m beyond excited to be in the Burlesque family and can’t wait to open as Ali Rose in Manchester in June.”
Jess rose to fame after winning the first series of the ITV show, The Voice Kids UK and in 2019 her band RLY won X Factor- The Band.