Meet the Cast: The Sapphires

Meet the Cast!

The Sapphires

Written & Directed by Tony Briggs

Jade Lomas-Ronan – Gail

Gamilaroi & Torres Strait Islander woman, Jade studied at The Aboriginal Centre for the Performing Arts (ACPA) between 2014-2017 where she received a Diploma of Film Television and Theatre as well as a Certificate IV in Performing Arts and an Advanced Diploma of Performing Arts. During her years at ACPA and since she has performed in various stage roles, TVCs & voice overs. She is very excited to have been given the opportunity to play the role of Gail in The Sapphires.

 

Lorinda May Merrypor – Julie / Dance Captain 

Darumbal woman, Lorinda is an Australian musical theatre performer originally from Rockhampton, QLD. In 2016, Lorinda graduated from the Griffith University Queensland Conservatorium with a Bachelor of Musical Theatre. While studying, she performed in several concerts, cabarets and theatre productions, including the role of Mimi Marquez in Rent. Lorinda has performed in a wide array of amateur productions in her hometown playing roles such as Nancy in Oliver, Little Inez in Hairspray and Dorothy Brock in 42nd Street. Soon after graduating from the conservatorium, Lorinda made her professional debut as a cast member of the Australian premier of the Broadway award-winning musical, American Idiot. Straight from American Idiot she was then cast in the Australian National tour of Beautiful: The Carole King Musical. Lorinda is extremely grateful for the opportunities she has had to be able to do what she loves every day and is thrilled to be a part of The Sapphires.

Mindy Kwanten – Cynthia / Vocal Coach

Mindy is a Wiradjuri Song Woman from Yass in NSW. She is a vocalist, multi-instrumentalist, actor, songwriter, producer and arranger and is a member of Women of Soul who have toured Australia singing Motown songs. She has studied classical singing at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music and at 17 was cast as Mabel in the Australia & Asia tours of Fame The Musical. She has played the role of Mary is David Atkin’s production of Hair and Diva in Priscilla Queen of the Desert. She has toured extensively as a backing vocalist for acts such as Archie Roach, Dan Sultan and David Campbell plus many more. She has sung in over 15 different Aboriginal languages. She runs an adult pop choir, was vocal coach for Christine Anu’s album Island Christmas and has a jazz trio.

 

Matilda Brown – Kay

Tharawal woman, Matilda is a 2015 graduate of QUT; shortly after graduating she made her professional debut as Ann in the Riverside Theatre’s production of Stolen, directed by Vicki Van Hout. Matilda’s further theatre credits include Jadah in Winyanboga Yurringa for Carriageworks; which subsequently toured Victoria, The Siren Project development; with a public showing hosted at the Merrigong Theatre Company for The Society of Histrionic Happenings. Matilda’s theatre credits whilst at QUT include Varya in The Cherry Orchard, Lady Montague in Romeo and Juliet, Mrs Stanley in The Man Who Came to Dinner, directed by Jennifer Flowers, Natalie Beyer in The Coast of Utopia: Voyage, which was directed by David Bell, and Mrs Oxenham in The Hot l Baltimore directed by Robert Benedetti.

 

Mike Smith – Dave / Resident Director 

After two successful HIT tours, The 39 Steps playing Richard Hannay and touring again with HIT in 2018 in the equally successful production of Hotel Sorrento as Dick Bennett, Mike is delighted to be collaborating with Tony Briggs and the wonderful cast and crew of The Sapphires. He relishes the chance to bring this story of family to audiences Australia-wide, in particular some of the far-reaching communities – who don’t often get to see this calibre of show. A 2005 NIDA Graduate, Mike is a Green Room Award Nominee for this portrayal of Tony in Billy Elliot – The Musical, directed by Stephen Daldry. Mike is also known for this TV roles in All Saints and Winners & Losers.

Lee Roy Tipiloura – Jimmy

Leeroy Tipiloura is a young indigenous performing artist who specialises in acting and music. In 2016 Leeroy attended the Aboriginal Centre for the Performing Arts (ACPA) and completed his Certificate 4 in performing arts as an actor. The following year he transferred disciplines and studied his Diploma certificate in music, in 2018 he graduated after completing his Advanced Diploma in performing arts as a musician. Leeroy’s experience as a performing artist range from extra work in films, roles in feature films and performing for the 2018 Commonwealth games closing ceremony with the ACPA choir. Undertaking the role as Jimmy in The Sapphires will mark Leeroy’s debut in musical theatre.

 

Anthony Lim – Joe

Anthony Lim is an Australian actor born and raised in Melbourne. The majority of Anthony’s training is derived from Deakin University where he has undertaken a study of the fine arts (theatre and film). To further enhance his skills, Anthony has also studied under Shaun Goss (NIDA) and Maria Efthmiopoulos (2 Divas). A film and television actor, Anthony has appeared on Robert Connolly’s Barracuda (2016), Neil Triffett’s EMO the musical (2016) and Emma Freeman’s Glitch (2019). Anthony is excited to make his theatrical debut on Tony Brigg’s The Sapphires (2019). Anthony will be portraying Joe (Tran Van Hai), a Vietnamese boy searching for his family who crosses paths with the Sapphires. Outside of acting, Anthony has a passion for boxing. The sweet science has taught him how to remain calm under pressure as getting punched in the face is far scarier than forgetting a few lines.

 

Wem Etuknwa – Robby

Originally from Nigeria, Wem moved to Canberra in 2003 with his parents and has had a passion for performing since. Wem appeared in To Kill a Mockingbird at the Canberra Theatre Center in 2012 before moving to Melbourne to get involved in more performing arts. Wem has appeared in a number of productions in Melbourne, having played the role of “James” for Buffalo Gal, “Lloyd” One Man Two Guvnors (Heidelberg Theatre), “Horse” and “Ensemble” for the both StageArt productions of The Full Monty and Memphis in 2017 (St Kilda Theatre and Chapel off Chapel).

 


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