Ex-soap star Andrew Lancel has joined the cast of new production Cilla the Musical, which comes to the Opera House in October.
The former Coronation Street and The Bill actor will play Brian Epstein, a character he previously played to critical acclaim in Epstein – The Man Who Made The Beatles.
Starring as the singer and TV presenter will be the previously announced Kara Lily Hayworth, who beat thousands of hopefuls in nationwide open auditions for the coveted role.
The musical is a stage adaptation of the hit ITV series on Cilla, and will reunite three of the cast from that version, Tom Dunlea, Michael Hawkins and Gemma Brodrick-Bower, as Hutch, John Lennon and Pauline respectively.
A spokesman said: “Cilla the Musical is the spectacular and heart-warming musical adaptation of the critically acclaimed hit ITV television series by Bafta-Award winner Jeff Pope (The Moorside, Philomena, From The Cradle To The Grave, Mrs Biggs and the acclaimed Little Boy Blue which had ITV audiences glued to their screens).
“It tells the extraordinary story of the ordinary girl from Liverpool whose teenage dreams of stardom lead her to becoming one of Britain’s best-loved entertainers of all time.
“It’s an introduction by a young John Lennon to music mogul Brian Epstein that changes Priscilla White’s life forever.
“By the age of just 25 she would be known as singer and TV Star Cilla Black, number one selling artist and at the fore-front of the Brit-Pop music scene.
“The musical score is the ultimate soundtrack to the 60s including Cilla’s greatest hits Anyone Who Had a Heart, Alfie and Something Tells Me, Twist and Shout by the Beatles, California Dreamin by The Mamas and The Papas’ and many more.
“The legendary Merseybeat sound is authentically performed live on stage by the cast.
* Cilla the Musical, Opera House, Blackpool, Tuesday to Saturday, October 17 to 21. Call 0844 856 1111 or visit www.wintergardensblack pool.com for tickets costing from £27.50.