Meet Team B: Vicki Manser

Vicki Manser
Photo credit: @sunnyafternoonthemusical

It’s impossible not to love Vicki.

She joined the show last April as cover for every single female role – even Mrs Davies! It took a little while for any of us to get the chance to see her onstage (we had a terrible knack of being otherwise engaged when she happened to be thrown on at the last second!), but it really was worth the wait. At that point she was the baby of the company, but it honestly seemed like she’d been a pro for the whole of her life.

Indulge me for a moment whilst I list her many talents: singing, dancing, comic timing, guitar, banjo, mandolin, trumpet… Have I missed any? Other than her extraordinary talent for effectively learning an entire show 5 times, that is. Ridiculous! I await my chance to see her as Gwen (this has only happened on very rare occasions so far) and, much less likely, Mrs Davies, but I can at least now celebrate having seen her quite a few times as Peggy, Joyce & Rasa.

There are various highlights depending on the role, so it’s very difficult to pick an absolute favourite – she’s a scream covering for Alice in Set Me Free, and it’s great when she steps in for Harriet & gets to tap dance in Denmark Street (I’ve seen that from table BB on a couple of occasions now – you can’t get much closer than that!). Though, obviously, as Rasa she gets so much more stage time, so that makes things even better! Her youth and natural positivity come in very handy here. She harnesses these traits brilliantly, giving a very accurate portrayal of a teenage fan who gets more than she bargained for. And, of course, she gets her own song – the haunting I Go To Sleep. Did I mention that she can sing? And when I say she can sing, she really can SING!

Somehow I’ve been rather lucky and seen her in partnership with four different Rays: John, Danny, Robbie and, only this week, Ryan. It’s wonderful to see different cast combinations at any time (what @Helzbels terms ‘Team B Roulette‘), but seeing the central romance played several different ways is very special indeed.

Vicki and Ryan
Vicki Manser and Ryan O’Donnell
Photo credit: @sunnyafternoonthemusical

Not only is she a talent on the stage, but she’s also an Instagrammer extraordinaire! Her stint was by far the most successful cast takeover to date, and she even took the reins when the original cast played OnBlackheath in September – catching up with us in the afternoon after their set. We’re all keeping our fingers crossed that she gets let loose with the camera again soon…

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