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Tammy Faye

Elton John And Scissor Sisters’ Jake Shears Provide The Music And Lyrics For The Tammy Faye Musical

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LONDON (CelebrityAccess) — Rehearsals are underway for Tammy Faye, a new musical about the former doyenne of televangelism, featuring music from Elton John and lyrics from Scissor Sisters frontman Jake Shears.

The production, which is set to debut this fall in London’s Almeida Theater, is directed by Rupert Goold, and features a creative team that includes choreographer Lynne Page, sound designer Bobby Aitken, and musical supervisor co-orchestrator and arranger Tom Deering.

Katie Brayben, who previously played Carole King in the musical of the same name, and Diana, Princess of Wales in the 2014 production of King Charles III, will take the leading role as Tammy Faye.

The cast also features Kelly Agbowu, Amy Booth-Steel, Fred Haig, Peter Caulfield, Danny Collins, Richard Dempsey, Ashley Campbell, Georgia Louise, Andrew Rannells, Robyn Rose, Nicholas Rowe, Martin Sarreal, Steve John Shepherd, Gemma Sutton and Zubin Varla.

“From a studio in South Carolina, Tammy Faye and Jim Bakker revolutionized religion,” according to a blurb on the theater’s website. “Preaching to millions 24 hours a day, Tammy just wants to put the fun back into faith. But a new wave of ministers wants you not to just feel God in your heart, but in your homes, in your schools and in the law too.”

Tammy Faye Messner, former wife of televangelist Jim Bakker, was a prominent figure in the American televangelism scene of the 1970s to 1990s, notable in her advocacy for LGBT persons and support of HIV/AIDS victims during the height of the epidemic in the early 1980s.

With her husband, Jim Bakker, she co-founded the PTL Club, and helped to promote the concept of the ‘prosperity gospel’ which has increasingly gained cachet among evangelicals in the U.S.

However, the PTL Club imploded in 1987 following revelations that Jim Bakker had paid $287,000 to Jessica Hahn to quiet allegations that he had sexually assaulted her. Bakker claimed the allegations were false, but they exposed the PTL Club and the Bakker’s lavish lifetyle and ultimately led to Bakker going to prison for fraud and conspiracy.

Messner later divorced Bakker and re-married real estate developer Roe Messner who later went to prison after he was convicted of bankruptcy fraud.

Messner died in 2007 after an eleven year battle with colon cancer.

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