By Brendan Rees
Jayme-Lee Hanekom says getting her golden ticket to star in Roald Dahl’s classic tale, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is “absolutely a dream come true.”
The 24-year-old of Narre Warren South is one of five actresses who has been cast to play bubble gum sensation Violet Beauregard in the new musical.
“It’s so exciting to play such an iconic role. There is so much about Violet that is just like me and then there’s the crazy, mean, bratty side to her that is so much fun to play!” Jayme-Lee says.
“Performing on stage has always been my dream! So getting to do that as Violet is absolutely a dream come true.”
Having begun performing at an early age, Jayme-Lee graduated from the Victorian College of the Arts in 2014 and completed a Diploma of Music Theatre at Jason Coleman’s Ministry of Dance in 2016.
She recently appeared in the Australian cast of The Book of Mormon and understudied the role of Nabulungi.
She has performed as the Leading Lady in Jason Coleman’s cabaret show, The Rhythm of Life and has toured Australia with Nickelodeon’s Paw Patrol Live.
Jayme-Lee secured the role of Young Nala in Disney’s The Lion King in 2005. Her other musical theatre credits include Stage Art’s 2016 revival of In The Heights and Stage Art’s 2016 Australasian Premiere of The Color Purple for which she was nominated for a Green Room Award for her portrayal of Celie.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory features songs from the original film, including Pure Imagination, The Candy Man and I’ve Got a Golden Ticket, alongside a brand new, toe-tapping and ear-tickling new score.
“It’s always so exciting over the holiday period because there’s so many family’s that come in and everyone is filled with Christmas joy, it’s just so uplifting and great,” Jayme-Lee says.