AUSTRALIA: Rising Zim-born star lands lead role in The Tina Turner Musical; ‘She’s is a beautiful performer’ – says icon

Spread This News

By Deborah Knight for

The Producers of ‘Tina: The Tina Turner Musical’ have announced that Zimbabwean Australian actress Ruva Ngwenya will play “Tina Turner” in the Australian Premier at the Theatre Royal Sydney this May.

Ruva Ngwenya has been gracing Australian stages since her early years with her first professional role in 2013 as Shenzi in The Lion King.  Born and educated in Melbourne, her musical instincts pay homage to her Zimbabwean Heritage.

Speaking about the announcement Tina Turner said; “Australia holds a very special place in my heart and I am thrilled to be bringing my wonderful musical to Sydney.

“Ruva Ngwenya is a beautiful performer who I know will bring her own joy and her soul to this role.  She joins a wonderful unique group of women that are my Tinas, and I’m proud of each and every one of them.  Sending all my love and blessings to Ruva and the whole Australian company.”

Ruva has performed in a string of successful musicals; We Will Rock YouBeautiful: The Carole King MusicalRagtime and more recently Moulin Rouge The Musical, solidifying Ruva as one of musical theatre’s most sought-after performers.  Playing Tina Turner in TINA – THE TINA TURNER MUSICAL marks her first lead role in musical theatre.

“I am honoured to have the opportunity to be part of this telling of Tina Turner’s life story,” she said.

Ruva Ngwenya

“Tina’s courage, grace and determination are inspirational to me and so many people around the world.  Her music literally changed my life as a 15-year-old when I performed River Deep – Mountain High solo on stage, for the very first time in my school musical. This moment led me to the path of performing and musical theatre.”

NSW Minister for Tourism and the Arts, Ben Franklin said“I am delighted for Ruva and congratulate her on being cast for the role as the iconic Tina Turner.

“I cannot wait for her to give simply the best performance when this internationally acclaimed, world-class production makes its Australian premiere in Sydney in May this year. The NSW Liberal and Nationals Government is committed to securing the world’s best productions like TINA – THE TINA TURNER MUSICAL for the Harbour City, which is key to our ambition to make Sydney and NSW the major events capital and premier visitor economy of the Asia Pacific.”

Produced by Paul Dainty/TEG DAINTY in special collaboration with Stage EntertainmentTali Pelman and Tina Turner; the musical reveals a comeback story like no other, of a woman who dared to defy the bounds of her age, gender and race to become the global Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll. TINA – THE TINA TURNER MUSICAL is a celebration of resilience and an inspiration of triumph over adversity.

One of the world’s best-selling artists of all time, Tina Turner has won 12 Grammy Awards and her live shows have been seen by millions, with more concert tickets sold than any other solo performer in music history.  When she was inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame in October, 2021Tina Turner became one of only three women in the institution’s history to be inducted twice (she was initially inducted in 1991, alongside Ike Turner).