NBC’s upcoming “Hairspray Live” has cast Emmy and Tony Award winner Kristin Chenoweth as Velma Von Tussle, TheWrap has learned.
Von Tussle is the producer of “The Corny Collins Show,” who will stop at nothing to make her daughter, Amber, the star that Velma never was. Her biggest foe is Tracy Turnblad (Maddie Baillio) and she’ll do everything in her power to prevent the integration of the “Corny Collins Show,” which Tracy wants so much.
“We are so excited and fortunate that Kristin — one of the best musical performers in the world — wants to come and play with us on ‘Hairspray,'” Robert Greenblatt, chairman of NBC Entertainment, said. “Everything she does is incredible, going back to the iconic Glinda in ‘Wicked,’ and there’s no one better to play Velma Von Tussle.”
Chenoweth won the Tony as Best Featured Actress in a Musical for the role of Sally in the 1999 production of “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown.” In one of her most memorable and popular performances, she turned in a Tony-nominated effort in 2004 for the role of Glinda the Good Witch in “Wicked.”
As a television actress, Chenoweth won an Emmy in 2009 as Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series for her role in “Pushing Daisies.” A year earlier she earned her first Emmy nomination, for the same role, and in 2010-11 was twice nominated for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series for “Glee.”
Her other TV roles include appearances on Emmy Award-winning drama “The West Wing,” “Ugly Betty” and “Hot in Cleveland.”
In addition to Chenoweth and Baillio, “Hairspray Live” stars Harvey Fierstein, who will recreate his iconic Tony Award-winning role as Edna; Oscar, Golden Globe and SAG Award winner Jennifer Hudson as Maybelle; Tony and Emmy winner Martin Short as Tracy’s father Wilbur; and Emmy winner Derek Hough will play Collins.
Craig Zadan and Neil Meron serve as executive producers. Fierstein will also provide a new teleplay and Tony winner Jerry Mitchell will serve as choreographer for the live production with music and lyrics by Tony winners Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman.
“Hairspray Live” will air Dec. 7 at 8/7c on NBC.