Local Actress Channing Weir Returns Home in Pretty Woman: The Musical

Arts & Culture

Pictured: Pretty Woman: The Musical brings a classic story to Sarasota. Photo courtesy of Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall.

Being a principal understudy for a national tour of a Broadway musical is no easy task. Being a swing, a member of the company who understudies several roles, might be even more difficult. Channing Weir is both. “I’m part of the national tour of Pretty Woman: The Musical and I am a swing and a principal understudy with the show, which means that I cover every single female presenting ensemble member and I am the first understudy for both female leads, Vivian Ward and Kit De Luca,” says Weir. “Every female character on stage I have to be able to do on a moment's notice.”

Weir, a native of the area and graduate of Lakewood Ranch High School, will be performing in the area for the first time since her high school days, where she made her bones performing at the Manatee Performing Arts Center, the Sarasota Players and other venues. “This is my first national tour, but not my first time being a swing,” says Weir. “ I’m kind of a career swing. I’ve done it many, many times. I started swinging back when I was in high school, down in Bradenton and Sarasota as a kid. Fortunately my brain works in the way that works well for being a swing.”

For Weir, not only has the show given her the opportunity to travel across the country and experiment with different roles within the musical, but it’s also given her the chance to be a part of an iconic story. “I’ve been a fan of the film since I first saw it back in highschool. I wasn’t as familiar with the musical, however, I know that the creators of the show and the incredible Broadway team are very iconic and getting to work with them was a big highlight for me,” says Weir. “They did a great job of putting every single iconic moment, scene and piece of dialogue into the show in some way. All of the iconic Vivian costumes are in the show, all the big one liners from Vivian and Kit are there. It’s a really well written way of keeping such a fun classic movie that everyone can quote and bringing it to a new medium of being on stage.”

November 27, 7:30 pm and November 28, 2 pm and 7:30. pm,  777 N Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, 941-953-3368. 

Pictured: Pretty Woman: The Musical brings a classic story to Sarasota. Photo courtesy of Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall.

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