Welcome to the first in my series of ‘Top Fives’ for a Friday. First up it’s the top five dogs in musicals – all shows seen by Sue in the Stalls as it happens. And I’m talking about dogs with named parts – not just those who walk on as an extra!
Five – Bruiser, Legally Blonde the Musical
The original Bruiser from the Reese Witherspoon film was played by a Chihuahua called Moonie who died earlier this year.
Four – Rufus, Legally Blonde the Musical
Monty and Ronny played Rufus the bulldog in the London production, coming from the same trainer and at the same time as…
Three – Toto, The Wizard of Oz
Razzle was one of four different West Highland Terriers who played Toto in the 2011 Palladium production. Toto in the film was played by a female Cairn Terrier called Terry.
Two – Bullseye, Oliver!
An English Bull Terrier called Butch played Bullseye in the 1968 film. His owner was Cindy Sharville, who went on to provide show business dogs for numerous productions, including the West End productions of the previously mentioned Legally Blonde and The Wizard Oz.
One – Sandy, Annie
Is there ever a time when Annie isn’t being produced somewhere in the UK? The most recent professional tour starring Lesley Joseph ended in the summer but there are amateur productions at the Theatre Royal Windsor this month and the Stag Theatre Sevenoaks in November to name but two. The first Sandy was played by a dog actually called Sandy and trained by Bill Berloni for the 1977 Broadway production. He also trained the dog in the 2014 film.
Sue in the Stalls has seen all these shows – and their canine stars – and can’t think of any other musicals which have named parts for dogs. Can you?