Posted on 7 July 2011

Respect La Diva, conceived and directed by Adrian Grant, the creator of hit international show Thriller Live, will arrive at the Garrick Theatre for a strictly limited run from 7 September until 24 September, with press night on 8 September.

Celebrating the greatest hits of five decades of Divas from Beyoncé to Bassey, Respect La Diva is an uplifting musical celebration paying tribute to some of the greatest female singers of all time. Hosted by X-Factor finalist Andy Abraham and headlined by singers Sheila Ferguson (The Three Degrees), Denise Pearson (Five Star), Katy Setterfield (The One & Only) and Zoe Birkett (West End/Pop Idol), alongside a cast of West End singers, dancers and a live band, Respect La Diva showcases songs by iconic Divas including Diana Ross, Tina Turner, Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston, Etta James, Shirley Bassey, Mariah Carey, Beyoncé, Alicia Keys, Dusty Springfield and many more.

Respect La Diva is designed by Jonathan Park, with lighting by Paul Moorhouse, sound by Phillip Cluskey with assistant direction/choreography by Racky Plews and is produced and directed by Adrian Grant for Baronet Entertainment.

Respect La Diva is a show with a social message that aims to raise awareness of domestic violence and abuse against women and children.  The production is therefore proud to be supporting the national charity Refuge.*

Sandra Horley CBE, chief executive of Refuge, says: “Respect La Diva is a show about strong and inspirational women.  Every day Refuge supports women and children whose lives have been shattered by domestic violence.  But despite enduring months or even years of violence and control, abused women and children are resilient, courageous and determined to rebuild their lives.  They are inspirational.  I can think of no better tribute to the 80,000 women and children Refuge supports every year than the positive, empowering message of Respect La Diva.  We are proud and grateful to receive their support.”  

Andy Abraham is most recognised for winning second place in 2005’s X-Factor. This led to Abraham’s involvement in three national tours, X Factor Arena 2006, Unforgettable Tour 2006 and An Evening With... in 2008.  He has released three albums, Impossible Dream and Soul Man in 2006 and Even If in 2008. Andy represented the UK in the 2008 Eurovision Song Contest and the following year he went on a sell out 54 date national tour.

Sheila Ferguson was the lead singer in the hit 1970’s group The Three Degrees, who had over seventeen chart hits including When Will I See You Again, Take Good Care Of Yourself and A Woman In Love.  Her most recent album is New Kind of Medicine. Ferguson’s previous stage credits include Thoroughly Modern Millie at the Shaftesbury Theatre, Soul Train at the Victoria Palace Theatre and Oh What A Night!, which toured internationally. In 2010 she headlined on the Irish tour of Fame.

Denise Pearson is an award-winning performer, renowned for being the lead singer in the 1980’s pop group Five Star with hits such as System Addict, The Slightest Touch and Rain or Shine.  Five Star were the youngest British group to have a number one album and receive seven consecutive hit singles from one album in the UK.  Denise’s stage credits include Thriller Live in the West End and on tour and in 2009 she released her debut solo single, Here I Am.

After touring with the show That’ll Be The Day, Katy Setterfield joined the BBC1 show The One And Only, winning in 2008 with her renditions of Cher and Dusty Springfield’s renowned hits, leading to a three month run in Legends In Concert in Las Vegas. Katy subsequently recorded a compilation album entitled You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me – The Songs of Dusty and went on a 50 date national tour. Since 2009 Katy has toured in her own show, Katy Setterfield – Dusty And Friends and earlier this year she joined the original Springfields in a tribute show to Dusty at the Royal Albert Hall.

Zoe Birkett first came to national attention in 2002’s Pop Idol, which she followed with two national tours and a group album, Pop Idol Big Band, which reached number one in the album chart and went triple platinum within a year. Her recent stage credits include playing one of the Divas in the original London cast of Priscilla Queen Of The Desert The Musical, principal singer in What A Feeling at the Palladium and lead female in Thriller Live at the Lyric Theatre, Shaftesbury Ave. Birkett’s screen credits include I Dream for BBC1 and most recently ITV’s Sing If You Can.

Adrian Grant’s first theatre production was Thriller Live, which first previewed in 2006 at the Dominion Theatre, before several nationwide and European tours, and a successful run at the Lyric Theatre, Shaftesbury Ave, where it continues to play. Adrian has managed music artists for over fifteen years, runs a record label, and is an established writer and publisher with numerous magazine and book credits including Michael Jackson – The Visual Documentary.

Racky Plews is director and choreographer in residence Upstairs at the Gatehouse where credits include; A Slice of Saturday Night, The Drowsy Chaperone, Buddy – The Buddy Holly Story, Into The Woods and Side by Side by Sondheim, The Hot Mikado and Talent. Further choreography credits include The Tender Land at the Arcola, and the 48 hour showtime challenge in the West End – with credits including The Boy Friend at Her Majesty’s Theatre, Haymarket and Crazy For You and Me & My Girl at the Palladium.  Racky is also a founder member of Triptic Productions.

*Respect La Diva and Refuge have set up a special mobile text donation line where you text the code DIVA40 to 70070 and pledge an amount of up to £10 e.g. ‘DIVA40 £10’. The text is free to send and the donation will be added to standard phone bills. UK only.