Stars of "Pretty Woman: The Musical" to Perform Locally - TribPapers

Stars of “Pretty Woman: The Musical” to Perform Locally

Actors Chase Wolfe and Bethany McDonald will star in The Last Five Years.

Tryon – Two stars from the National Broadway Tour of Pretty Woman: The Musical are performing in a limited engagement of the hit musical The Last Five Years by Jason Robert Brown. The performances star Bethany McDonald and Chase Wolfe for four shows at the Tryon Fine Arts Center on June 13 through 16. The musical is produced by the Shakespeare & Friends theater company with Catherine Gillet directing. 

The Last Five Years, a recipient of a Drama Desk, Lucille Lortel and Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Musical, explores a five-year relationship between Jamie Wellerstein, a rising novelist, and Cathy Hiatt, a struggling actress. An emotionally powerful and intimate musical about two young New Yorkers who fall in and out of love over the course of five years, the show’s unconventional structure consists of Cathy, the woman, telling her story backwards while Jamie, the man, tells his story chronologically. 

The inventive musical style draws on a number of musical genres, including pop, jazz, classical, Klezmer, Latin, blues, rock, and folk. 

“This award-winning musical is sure to please,” said director Gillet. “It has been translated into dozens of languages and performed all over the world. It’s a sparkling piece of writing with beautifully crafted and catchy songs. I am looking forward to directing this piece at the Tryon Fine Arts Center, which offers many creative possibilities for staging.”

The Last Five Years will be the first musical presented in the Tryon Fine Arts Center’s new Pavillion performance space. The Pavillion was completed in 2019 and recently upgraded with state-of-the-art theatrical equipment for professional-quality lighting, video, and immersive sound to complement the performance. 

The production marks a homecoming celebration for star Carolina native Chase Wolfe. Though he lives and works in New York City currently, Wolfe graduated from Wofford College in Spartanburg, SC. He has performed in theaters across Western North Carolina and Upstate South Carolina. Wolfe starred in Shakespeare & Friends first musical The Light in the Piazza in 2021. 

Originally from northern England, star Bethany McDonald moved to New York City to originate the lead role of Mindy in her Off Broadway debut in the world premiere of Mike & Mindy’s Wild Weekend Jam. She studied for four years across London and Barcelona, graduating with honors from the London School of Musical Theatre. Fresh off the US National Tour of Pretty Woman: The Musical, Bethany covered the iconic leading lady Vivian Ward, made famous by Julia Roberts. Additional credits include SIX: The Musical, Saturday Night Fever, and Ordinary Days

“This is one of my favorite musical scores,” said McDonald. “I’m so excited to be performing it for this community!”

Director Catherine Gillet is originally from New York City and currently lives in Tryon where she co-founded the Shakespeare & Friends theater company to create unexpected twists on plays and musicals. Gillet’s original plays have been published and produced in numerous venues Off Broadway and around the country. Wyoming, the recipient of a grant from The Jerome Foundation, was produced in New York at the 78th Street Theater Lab, and it was Playbill’s “Pick of the Week” for Drama for its entire run. Locally, she has debuted her work in Tryon, Asheville, and Greenville, NC. She is a member of the Dramatists Guild and New Circle Rep Theater Company and has been featured in the Best Plays and Playwrights anthology.

The Last Five Years will run Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 3:00 p.m., June 13–16, at Tryon Fine Arts Center at 34 Melrose Avenue, Tryon. Tickets are $20 and available at