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Mary Poppins entrances audiences at The Belk Theater

Caroline Sheen as ‘Mary Poppins’ and Gavin Lee as ‘Bert” perform “Chim Chim Cher-ee.” National Tour Company of MARY POPPINS. .
Caroline Sheen as ‘Mary Poppins’ and Gavin Lee as ‘Bert” perform “Chim Chim Cher-ee.” National Tour Company of MARY POPPINS. .
©Disney/CML Photo by Joan Marcus.

Children and adults alike will enjoy the magical story of perhaps the most famous nanny (before the TV “Nanny”) in Mary Poppins, playing at the Belk Theater for a limited four-week engagement through Sunday, Sept. 19. In addition to a fantastic set design by Bob Crowley, the Disney and Cameron Mackintosh co-production features a top notch cast with the original United Kingdom Tour star, Caroline Sheen, as “Mary Poppins” and the original Broadway company member, Dominic Roberts, as “Bert.”

The imperious, yet magical English nanny was introduced in children’s literature by British actress/author, P.L. Travers in her children's book series, Mary Poppins (1934). Following the enduring Walt Disney classic film adaptation in 1964, the musical Mary Poppins premiered at the Prince Edward Theatre in the West End (2004) and opened on Broadway at the New Amsterdam Theatre (2006), reaching the Top Ten lists for both highest-grossing and best-attended shows of the 2009-10 Broadway season.

The North American tour of the stage production, which opened in Chicago in 2009, continues with book by Academy Award®-winning screenwriter Julian Fellowes and Academy Award®-winning music and lyrics of Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman. Although the premise is the same, the musical does not follow the exact storyline of the 1964 movie and there are new songs and additional music and lyrics by the Olivier Award-winning team of George Stiles and Anthony Drewe.

Joining Sheen and Roberts are Laird Mackintosh as “George Banks”, Blythe Wilson as “Winifred Banks”, Rachel Izen as “Mrs. Brill”, Dennis Moench as “Robertson Ay”; Mary VanArsdel plays “The Bird Woman” and Ellen Harvey as “Miss Andrew.” Performances in the role of “Jane Banks” will be alternated between Camille Mancuso and Paige Simunovich. Performances in the role of “Michael Banks” are alternated between Talon Ackerman and Cade Canon Ball.

Sheen plays a consummate Mary Poppins and appears to be having great fun in doing so. Roberts is a bit stiff at first but his Bert wins the audience over with his antics happy-go-lucky matter-of-fact ways. Ackerman is delightful to watch as Michael Banks and VanArsdel’s beautiful voice makes the song “Feed the Birds” even more poignant. Although Mackintosh, with his shallow acting and less than sonorous voice is a disappointment, he rallies to his worth in the end.

The Charlotte engagement of “Mary Poppins”, presented by arrangement with the Blumenthal Performing Arts Center as part of the Duke Energy Broadway Lights Series, plays at the Belk Theatre from August 27 to September 19 Tuesday through Thursday evenings at 7:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday evenings at 8:00 p.m., Sunday evenings at 6:30 p.m., Saturday matinees at 2:00 p.m. and Sunday matinees at 1:00 p.m.

Ticket prices start as low as $32.50. Special Premium Ticket Packages are available at select performances, and include premium seating and a complimentary souvenir program. Tickets are available at the Belk Theater Box Office located in the Tryon Street lobby of the Belk Theater, online at or by phone at 704-372-1000. Orders for groups of twenty (20) or more may be placed by calling 704-379-1380

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