'Mary Poppins' star on performing 'dream role' at Straz in Tampa: interview

wtatangelo@bradenton.comDecember 16, 2012 

Like you, and probably everybody else you know, Madeline Trumble grew up watching the Disney classic "Mary Poppins" starring Julie Andrews.

But she didn't dream of being the nanny who's "practically perfect in every way."

No, she wanted to be the Banks girl.

"I wanted to be Jane so Mary Poppins could be my nanny," Trumble said. "I had visions and dreams of that."

The touring production of the hit Broadway musical "Mary Poppins" begins a five-day engagement Dec. 26 at the Straz Center for the Performing Arts in Tampa.

Trumble, whose family will be in the audience, plays Poppins.

"At least a few times a week, I kind of have a moment where I think this is pretty cool that this is my life," said the 23-year-old from Berkeley, Calif. "I know it's a cliché, but it's a dream come true."

"Mary Poppins," a coproduction of Disney and super producer Cameron Mackintosh ("Les Misérables," "The Phantom of the Opera"), is based almost as much on P.L. Travers' original stories as the 1964 film of the same name.

Con O'Shea-Creal, who plays Bert -- famously portrayed on screen by Dick Van Dyke -- explains that the stage show focuses more on the Banks children and their distracted dad, George Banks.

"He has a great arc throughout the show, and I serve more as a narrator, helping

Mary teach the kids lessons that they teach their parents," O'Shea-Creal said during another phone interview.

"Audiences can go home thinking about the importance of childhood innocence."

And, yes, all your favorite songs -- from "Chim Chim Cher-ee" to "A Spoonful of Sugar" to "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious" to "Let's Go Fly a Kite" -- will be performed. The stage play features the Oscar-winning music and lyrics of Richard Sherman and Robert Sherman.

"I already knew all the words to 'Spoonful of Sugar' from watching the movie growing up," Trumble said.

"It's one of those tunes that will never leave your head."

The stage productionhas been created, in collaboration with Mackintosh,by Academy Award-win-ning screenwriter Julian Fellowes ("Gosford Park," "Downtown Abbey"), who wrote the book.

The Olivier Award-winning team of GeorgeStiles and Anthony Drewe composed the new songs.

"It's a great mishmash and aggregate of the movie and books; of old and new," O'Shea-Creal said.

"The way they capture that sense of magic and wonder on stage, they've done an excellent job."

Details: 7:30 p.m. Dec. 26, 2 and 7:30 p.m. Dec. 27, 8 p.m. Dec. 28., 2 and 8 p.m. Dec. 29, 1 and 6:30 p.m. Dec. 30; Straz Center for the Performing Arts, 1010 N. MacInnes Place, Tampa. Tickets: $25 (starting price). For the Dec. 26 performance, purchase one full-price adult ticket and get one free child's ticket (restrictions apply). Come early for pre-show, family-friendly activities. Information: 813-229-7827 or www.strazcenter.org.

Wade Tatangelo, features writer/columnist, can be reached at 941-745-7057. Follow Twitter.com/wtatangelo.

Bradenton Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service