The Guildford School of Acting (GSA) is widely regarded as one of the leading performing arts schools in the UK. Founded by Pauline Grant and Bice Bellairs in 1935, the Surrey-based institution provides professional training in drama, musical theatre and production skills for students looking for a career in the industry and can be credited with having put some of the best performers on the West End stage: notable GSA alumni include Michael Ball (Sweeney Todd, Les Miserables), Celia Imrie (Noises Off, Acorn Antiques), Daniel Boys (Avenue Q, Peter Pan), Dianne Pilkington (Mamma Mia, Wicked) and Caroline Sheen (Les Miserables, Mary Poppins). These are just the GSA alumni who have already established themselves in the world of musical theatre however. The school has much more to offer to the future health of the industry, starting with ‘The Baking Committee’.
Comprised of a group of students from the GSA, ‘The Baking Committee’ are the creative minds behind the latest original cast recording from SimG Records: The Bakewell Bake Off.
A heart-warming, comic musical set in a small Derbyshire town, The Bakewell Bake Off began life as an in-house college writing project. The ‘weird and wonderful’ residents of Bakewell are the focus point of the show, which circulates around a local baking competition.
‘Take seven eager contestants, three feuding judges and one bewildered hostess, add flour eggs and sugar and mix together in a small village. Add the pressure of a baking competition and you’ve got a recipe for a hilarious musical comedy!’
This original British musical had a 4-day trial run at the Waterloo East Theatre in the summer of this year which was a sell-out success. A full-length production followed at the Landor Theatre for a 3-week residency in October and gained similar acclaim in the ensuing reviews. Written by and starring ‘The Baking Committee’ both productions were directed by the course leader Julian Woolford and featured musical direction by Kevin Michael Cripps.
‘The Baking Committee’ is made up of 14 GSA students, including Nicole Tiffany Rushing and Kayleigh Thadani who choreographed the show. Also involved in the group are Cerys Alley, Tom Beynon, Will Ferris, Katherine Glover, Victoria Humphreys, Emily Jeffreys, Maura Matlak, James Moriarty, Alexandra Spalding and Tim Stuart.
Having received an overwhelmingly positive response so far, it seems likely that there is a future for this musical, though what that future holds is as yet unknown. The show’s website hints that fans may not have long to wait to find out though, having recently posted a teaser statement there saying, ‘Keep those eyes peeled and those baking trays at the ready for some DELICIOUSLY exciting news coming very soon!!!’
Right now though, The Bakewell Bake Off is looking to gain wider recognition through the original cast recording which was released on Monday (16th December 2013) and features 18 tracks, including a bonus company number entitled ‘I Bake (Susie & Freddie win)’. It was released by SimG Records, an off-shoot of SimG Productions which was founded by actor/director Simon Greiff in 2009. One of the biggest champions of original musical theatre writing in both the UK and USA, Greiff has showcased the work of many new writers and performers through concerts, cabarets and album releases.
He has rarely gone wrong in lending his support in the past and it is only work of the highest quality that you’ll find attached to his name; a SimG seal of approval is a pretty sure guarantee. The Bakewell Bake Off is another one-to-watch new musical in the long list of SimG Records releases, and one which is so deliciously good it is sure to have you licking your fingers and wanting more.
The entire track list for The Bakewell Bake Off original cast recording can be found below:
1. In Bakewell – Alexandra Spalding & Company
2. The Bakewell Anthem – Company
3. I Will Rise – Company
4. The Original Bakewell Tart – Lucy Emmott & Company
5. I Love Christmas – Maura Matlak & Company
6. Henrietta’s Lieder – Tom Beynon
7. Let Me Fit In – Kayleigh Thadani
8. I Won’t Give In – Will Ferris, Cerys Alley & Emily Jeffreys
9. How Do I Feel? – Company
10. In Bakewell (Reprise) – Alexandra Spalding & Company
11. Science Of Baking – Katherine Glover
12. When We Find Our Tart – Company
13. We Might Fall In Love – Emily Jeffreys, Tim Stuart & Katherine Glover
14. The Future Of Bakewell – Company
15. Bake Your Way To Heaven – Victoria Humphreys & Company
16. I Bake (Pradeepta & Hugh win) – Company
17. Recipe For Success – Company
By Julie Robinson (@missjulie25)
Thursday 19th December 2013
The Bakewell Bake Off original cast recording is now available from iTunes and the SimG Productions website.