News Story

Oxford Playhouse is excited to be joined by a stellar cast led by Orange is the New Black’s Shawna Hamic and RuPaul’s Drag Race UK queen River Medway in the critically acclaimed musical parody Unfortunate: The Untold Story of Ursula and the Sea Witch. After making a huge splash at Southwark Playhouse Elephant, the smash hit musical will play on The Playhouse Main Stage from Tuesday 23 to Saturday 27 April.

The brand-new show features an original hot pop soundtrack and trademark filthy humour, with Shawna Hamic leading the cast as Ursula and River Medway as Ariel. The show received rave reviews in London, with nominations for six Off West End Theatre Awards – one of the highest for any show in the past year. For those aged over 16, Unfortunate puts the Disney Diva front and centre, giving her take on what really happened all those years ago. Take the plunge and experience Ursula in a way you’ve never seen before.

Cruella told her side, and Maleficent had her moment. Now the legendary queer queen is ready to spill, in this tell-all tale of sex, sorcery and suckers. With a new script and production, the latest version of this hit show is bigger, bolder and sexier than ever before. It’s time to take the plunge and dive into this year’s hottest night out.

Shawna Hamic and River Medway are joined by Thomas Lowe as Triton, Allie Dart as Sebastian, Jamie Mawson as Eric, Julian Capolei as Grimsby and Corrina Buchan, Jack Gray, Jamie McKillop and Milly Willows in the ensemble. Casting is by Sarah Leung CDG.

The smash-hit show is written by Robyn Grant (who also directs) and Daniel Foxx, with music, arrangements and orchestrations by Tim Gilvin. The musical features set, costume and puppet design by Abby Clarke, choreography by Melody Sinclair, additional orchestrations and music production by Nikki Davison and Joe Davison for Auburn Jam, musical supervision and direction by Arlene McNaught, associate musical supervision by Rachel Murphy, lighting design by Adam King, content sound design by Lucy Baker-Swinburn, system sound design by Oscar Thompson and Will Thompson, flying and effects by John Maddox for Suspended Illusions, make-up design by Maya Lewis and Christina Semertzaki, intimacy and fight direction by Claire Llewellyn for RC-Annie, production management by Titch Gosling, assistant direction by Stephenson Ardern-Sodje and Eliza Beth Stephens, costume supervision by Sian Clare, prop supervision by Freya Espie and puppets built by Aled Williams. The band is completed by Dejeanté Hinks on guitar and Becky Slater on drums.

Taking on the role of legendary queer queen Ursula, Shawna’s theatre credits include 1776 (Broadway and US National Tour), The Last Ship (Broadway and US National Tour), Les Misérables (US National Tour), Kinky Boots (US National Tour), Miss You Like Hell (The Public Theater, Off-Broadway) and My Paris (Terris Theater, Connecticut). TV credentials include Orange is the New Black, The Time Traveller’s Wife, Halston, Russian Doll, New Amsterdam, That Damn Michael Che, Bull and BRUISED.

After appearing on the third season of RuPaul’s Drag Race UK,River quickly became a fan favourite. River has since travelled the UK on various tours, including Pick’n’Mix, The Main Event and the official Drag Race UK Season 3 tour. In 2021, she also briefly joined the cast as Alice in Tuckshop’s Dick Whittington (Phoenix Theatre, West End). She continues to headline Pride events and club gigs across the country. Most recently, River played Sister Mary Julie Andrews in Death Drop: Back In The Habit (West End and UK Tour).