A Spoonful of Sherman is a celebration of 100 years of the musical Sherman family featuring the hits Let’s Go Fly A Kite!, You’re Sixteen, It’s A Small World (After All), I Wanna Be Like You, The Ugly Bug Ball, Feed The Birds, Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, Hushabye Mountain, A Spoonful Of Sugar and more. Ahead of their visit to us, we sat down with the cast Sophie Louise-Dann (Gary Barlow’s The Girls Musical), former A1 band member Mark Read (Guys and Dolls), Glen Facey (Hairspray), Jenna Innes (Animus) and Ben Stock (Beauty and the Beast) to find out more about the show.
What’s ‘A SPOONFUL OF SHERMAN’ about?
BEN: ASOS is the story of three generations of songwriters, Al, Robert, Richard and Robbie…and at its heart is exactly that – family. The incredible wealth of music produced by these hugely talented men chart the history of their lives and in turn – because so much is familiar – seems to reflect our own growing up.
SOPHIE: It’s a revue created from the incredible catalogue of the Sherman family’s music. A sort of musical memoir featuring the songbook of your childhood.
GLEN: It hasn’t followed a structure of anything I’ve done before – I think the audience will love hearing the songs they grew up with and will be surprised about how many they know.
JENNA: It’s all about telling the incredible story of one family – The Sherman Family – and their incredible contribution to the world of songwriters! We’re celebrating 100 years of the Shermans and their great music that everyone knows and loves.
MARK: It’s a show that takes the audience on a journey through the lives of legendary songwriters the Sherman Brothers. We celebrate their music – which we grew up listening to – and other generations of Sherman family music: from their father Al Sherman, who wrote hits for Frank Sinatra and many, many others, to Robbie Sherman, Robert Sherman’s son, who’ll be joining us for some of the tour.
What do you do in the show?
BEN: I am one of the 5 cast members and also act as musical director and play the majority of the score. Mark Read (another cast member) is also a brilliant pianist which gives me the opportunity to get off the piano to sing and perform…it’s a busy show!
SOPHIE-LOUISE: Alongside four wonderful colleagues we sing a fabulous selection of Sherman brothers hit songs narrating their story throughout the evening.
GLEN: I narrate the story of the Sherman family and semi-adopt the characters when we perform extracts of the Sherman shows – for example I have the privilege of singing I Wanna Be Like You from The Jungle Book so I get to be the cool cat King Louis.
JENNA: I’m part of an ensemble group of actors who tell the family’s story. We portray the different characters within the songs helping to create the full picture.
MARK: As one of the cast of 5 performers, I’ll be narrating, sharing the stories of the Sherman family with the audience, and of course singing and acting out these fun and unforgettable songs. I’ll also be playing piano on several numbers and the ukulele might make an appearance too!
When did you first discover the music and songs of the Sherman Brothers?
BEN: The first film I ever saw was The Aristocats, so that was my first introduction – though I was only 5 so I didn’t know it then!!
SOPHIE-LOUISE: Their names were synonymous with the music in the films we grew up watching – Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Mary Poppins, The Slipper and the Rose.
GLEN: The Jungle Book – my dad took me when I was about five. Then last year I was on tour with Mary Poppins and learned so much about the music and songs of the Sherman family – we performed everywhere – from Zurich to Dubai! Everyone loves Mary Poppins.
JENNA: It feels as though there’s never been a time where I didn’t know these songs. I grew up watching classic films like The Jungle Book and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang but it wasn’t until I started research for this project that I realised how many of the Sherman songs I actually already knew and loved!
MARK: I’ve always been a huge fan of the Sherman Brothers songs; I don’t remember a time when I didn’t know the songs of the Jungle Book and Mary Poppins; they’ve been with me my whole life and they played an integral part in inspiring me to become a performer and songwriter.
What do you like most about being on tour?
BEN: I adore touring…….different theatres and towns – finding a country house or cafe you’ve not been to before……love it!
SOPHIE-LOUISE: There’s something exciting about ‘getting in’ the show to a new space; finding a local place of interest and finding the best tea rooms for a cheeky company cream tea!
GLEN: The chance to explore new cities – I absolutely love to travel. We’re going to some beautiful small cities and towns that I’ve never been to before plus some cities I did with ‘Hairspray’ last year – Dubai was HOT! I’d never experienced heat quite like it – very beautiful city in a way, very grand – air con in the theatre.
JENNA: This is actually my first experience on tour as I only graduated in September 2017! I’m looking forward to seeing different theatres all around the country. I’m also extremely excited to go back to my home city of Aberdeen.
MARK: I’ve been touring all over the world for close to 20 years now, with my own band (A1) and various other shows and I love having the opportunity to travel and visit new cities and performing for amazing audiences every night. It’s an absolute thrill and honour to be a part of this show and I know that audiences of all ages will love it.
Why should people come to see the show?
BEN: Because you’ll have the time of your lives – you will know so many of the songs and be introduced to some new ones, you’ll hear songs and think ‘I didn’t know they wrote that’, you’ll hear the story of a remarkable family, see and hear 4 (5 if I include myself!) brilliant performers and you’ll love an evening or afternoon of nostalgia and revisiting The Songbook Of Your Childhood.
SOPHIE-LOUISE: The show has a universal appeal whether you’re 2 or 92. I guarantee you’ll leave the theatre humming your favourite Sherman tune. It’s a perfect treat for all the family.
GLEN: You come along to hear the great songs you love – and to enjoy songs you won’t know and we’re sure you’re gonna love them.
JENNA: Because for two hours you can completely escape, go back in time and tap your feet and even sing along.
MARK: There’s so many fantastic songs to sing along to and enjoy in this show, some that the audiences may not realise that they already knew them and I’m sure it’ll bring memories of their childhoods and the films they heard them in back to them and I’ve no doubt they’ll go home with a smile on their faces, and a song in their hearts, what more could you want?
A Spoonful of Sherman is at the Wyvern Theatre on Monday 30th April.
For more information and to buy tickets please visit: http://bit.ly/ASpoonfulOfSherman