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Willemijn Verkaik

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Willemijn Verkaik

Willemijn Verkaik (Will-uh-mine Ver-kike) born on June 16, 1975 is a Dutch singer and stage-actress. She played Elphaba in the original German production of Wicked, in both Stuttgart and Oberhausen, as well as in the original Dutch production of Wicked, in Scheveningen. On Tuesday February 12th, 2013, she assumed the role of Elphaba in the Broadway production of Wicked. She began performances on November 18th, 2013, in the London production. It was announced that she would be leaving the production on October 25, 2014, but due to a back problem which she needed surgery for, she left the production on July 19, 2014, and was replaced by Kerry Ellis. Verkaik holds the distinction of being the first and so far only actress to perform the role in more than one language, in her case three languages. Until Jennifer DiNoia took over the role in London on 27th October 2014, Willemijn remains the only actress to have performed the role in four countries. Willemijn Verkaik has played the role more times than any other actress in the world.


BiographyEdit

Willemijn was born in Son en Breugel in the Netherlands, but grew up in Nuenen near Eindhoven. She graduated from the Rotterdam Conservatory, where she was coached by Laura de Bekker. Willemijn started playing with bands, but decided to do musicals. She started in the company of the Original Dutch Productions of Elisabeth and De Drie Musketiers. After her Dutch beginning she starred in the German productions of Elisabeth, We Will Rock You and Wicked. 

Elphaba willemijn verkaik

Willemijn Verkaik as Elphaba

In 2004, Verkaik played the singing voice of Erica in the Dutch version of the animated movie, Barbie as the Princess and the Pauper. In 2008, Verkaik recorded the Dutch voice of Lydia in Barbie and the Diamond Castle. In 2013, Willemijn recorded the Dutch voice and German singing voice of Elsa in Disney's Frozen, another role originated by Idina Menzel. Willemijn sings the Dutch and German versions of the Academy Award winning single 'Let It Go' from the film.

Work on "Wicked" Edit

Verkaik made her Wicked debut as Elphaba on October 31st, 2007, when the show premiered in Stuttgart, Germany. She starred alongside Lucy Scherer as Glinda. Verkaik departed the role on January 6, 2010, to star in the Best of Musical Tour. Her alternate Roberta Valentini took over the role until the closing of the production. She opened the new production in Oberhausen, Germany on March 9, 2010. She again left the show on February 27, 2011, and was replaced once again by Roberta Valentini, who had re-assumed her role as Verkaik's Alternate, the German version of a Standby. She is featured on the Original German Cast Recording.   On November 6, 2011, Verkaik returned to the role of Elphaba in the Dutch production of Wicked in Scheveningen, alongside Chantal Janzen as Glinda and Jim Bakkum as Fiyero with Renee van Wegberg as the Alternate Elphaba. On June 21st she played her 1,000th performance as Elphaba. The Dutch production of Wicked closed on January 11th, 2013 with Yvonne Coldeweijer aka "Keet!" in the role of Glinda.

On January 8th, 2012, Willemijn was named Wicked Personality of 2011 by voters on Broadwayiswicked.com.

On December 17th, 2012, Verkaik announced she'll replace Jackie Burns as Elphaba in the Broadway production of Wicked. On February 12th, 2013 she began performances on Broadway with Alli Mauzey as Glinda and Donna Vivino as her Standby. Verkaik finished her run on May 26th, 2013 with Katie Rose Clarke as Glinda. She was replaced by Lindsay Mendez.

On June 3rd, 2013, just eight days after she left the Broadway company of Wicked, it was announced that Verkaik would be replacing Louise Dearman as Elphaba in the West End production on November 18th, 2013.

Willemijn Verkaik 512x275 tcm8-202392

Willemijn Verkaik as Elphaba

It was announced on June 30th, 2014, that Willemijn would be leaving her fifth production of Wicked on October 25th, 2014. She was due to be replaced by Nikki Davis-Jones on October 27th, 2014.

However, due to a back injury from which Willemijn had been suffering, it was announced on July 14th, 2014 that Verkaik would be departing prematurely from the West End production that weekend on July 19th, 2014. At the end of her evening performance on July 19th, 2014, Willemijn was congratulated officially for her tremendous 7 year journey across 4 countries, in three languages by her fellow cast member, Savannah Stevenson. She was presented with a bouquet of flowers by the London cast and made a speech to the audience of how grateful she was to the audiences and crew of the US, Germany, the Netherlands and the UK. Stevenson then had the London audience give three cheers for Willemijn, as a "proper British sendoff" from her committed, multi-lingual 7 years in Wicked. In September 2016 it was announced that Willemijn will return to Wicked from the 30 January 2017, to the Apollo Victoria Theatre in London.

Other Theatre WorkEdit

May not be exact, correct as appropriate

Show Role Start End
Elisabeth (Netherlands) Ensemble 2001 2001
Jeans 11 (Netherlands) Soliste 2001 2002
3 Musketeers (Netherlands) Ensemble 2003 2003
We Will Rock You (Germany) Understudy 2004 2005
Elisabeth (Switzerland) Elisabeth 2006 2006
We Will Rock You (Germany) Killer Queen 2006 2006
Wicked (Stuttgart, Germany) Elphaba 2007 2010
Aida (Germany) Amneris 2009

EEEu

2009
Wicked (Oberhausen, Germany) Elphaba 2010 2011
Wicked (Scheveningen, Netherlands) Elphaba 2011 2013
Wicked (Broadway, New York) Elphaba 2013 2013
Mamma Mia (Stuttgart) Donna 2013 2013

Wicked (West End, London)

Elphaba

2013 (November) 2014
Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown (West End, London) Paulina December 2014 May 2015
Tarzan the Musical (Stuttgart) Kala August 2015 May

2016

Awards Edit

Award

Role

Given by

Year

Best Actress Elphaba German Musicals Magazine - Da Capo 2008
Best Actress Amneris German Musicals Magazine - Da Capo 2009
Audience Award for Best Actress Elphaba German Musicals Magazine - Musicals 2009
Best Actress Elphaba German Musicals Magazine - Da Capo 2010
Audience Award for Best Actress Elphaba German Musicals Magazine - Musicals 2010
Best Elphaba in the World Elphaba broadwayiswicked.com 2010
Wicked Personality of 2011 Elphaba broadwayiswicked.com 2012
Best Female Lead Elphaba Musicalworld Awards 2012
Best West End Début Elphaba West End Frame Awards 2014

VideosEdit

Frozen - Let It Go ~ Willemijn Verkaik - English02:46

Frozen - Let It Go ~ Willemijn Verkaik - English

Disney's Frozen "Let It Go" gezongen door Willemijn Verkaik Dutch (NL) Official Clip HD03:40

Disney's Frozen "Let It Go" gezongen door Willemijn Verkaik Dutch (NL) Official Clip HD

Willemijn Verkaik sings Defying Gravity from Wicked in three languages03:06

Willemijn Verkaik sings Defying Gravity from Wicked in three languages

OBSESSED! Willemijn Verkaik Takes "Defying Gravity" on a World Tour03:48

OBSESSED! Willemijn Verkaik Takes "Defying Gravity" on a World Tour


Willemijn Verkaik - Ik ben het niet03:20

Willemijn Verkaik - Ik ben het niet

Willemijn Verkaik - Ik ben het niet (I'm not that girl)

Musical Sing-a-long 2012 Netherlands - Wicked04:15

Musical Sing-a-long 2012 Netherlands - Wicked

Musical Sing-a-long 2012 Netherlands - Wicked

Popular Katie Rose Clarke w Willemijn Verkaik (HD VIDEO)-008:42

Popular Katie Rose Clarke w Willemijn Verkaik (HD VIDEO)-0

This is one of my favorite "Popular" with Katie & Willemijn.

Willemijn Verkaik & Katie Rose Clarke - For Good05:07

Willemijn Verkaik & Katie Rose Clarke - For Good

Defying Gravity full - Olivier Awards 2014 - Willemijn Verkaik04:13

Defying Gravity full - Olivier Awards 2014 - Willemijn Verkaik

Wicked Oberhausen - Solang ich dich hab - Willemijn & Anton-004:29

Wicked Oberhausen - Solang ich dich hab - Willemijn & Anton-0

Musical Wicked Dutch - Dit ene moment (Jim Bakkum en Willemijn Verkaik)-003:38

Musical Wicked Dutch - Dit ene moment (Jim Bakkum en Willemijn Verkaik)-0

Willemijn Verkaik - Catfight & 'T is nooit goed (No Good Deed)08:41

Willemijn Verkaik - Catfight & 'T is nooit goed (No Good Deed)

Willemijn Verkaik - Gutes Tun03:45

Willemijn Verkaik - Gutes Tun

Wicked Willemijn Verkaik Gutes tun No Good Deed rehearsal YouTube03:41

Wicked Willemijn Verkaik Gutes tun No Good Deed rehearsal YouTube

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