Lucy Lawless has been cast in two different roles for the musical "Chicago."
Taking on separate characters, the "Xena: Warrior Princess" actress will take on her first role in "Chicago" next month as Mama Morton. The actress will join Samantha Barks, Drew Carrey, and Steven Moyer amongst other actors in a three night, Hollywood Bowl production. Brooke Shields, who appeared in the musical on Broadway, will also be making her directorial debut.
But Lawless' stint with "Chicago" will not end there. In November the actress will travel to the Auckland Theatre Company, where she will reprise the role of Velma Kelly for a different "Chicago" production.
Lawless hopes that having the opportunity to hear the lines of her future character during her July debut will help her to prepare for her future role.
''I think it will be very helpful as I will be hearing the role that I will be doing later. I will be hearing other people do it,'' Lawless told The Sunday Star-Times.
While Lawless doesn't plan on copying the performance, having a rhythm to her future dialogue could be useful.
''It is only like a baseline, it is not like you are learning someone else's performance because Michael's production wouldn't allow that," she said. ''But to hear the rhythm of the dialogue, it gets in your bones and it becomes much easier."
Lawless noted that the Auckland production would have a special new take.
''This is an entirely new [production] ... it is cross-bred with The Sopranos. It has a much more gritty, modern sensibility, but still with all that glitz. It revels in its own tawdriness," she said. ''It is about defiling all the sacred cows, that is about what this show is about. It is quite adult as well. If you want to come for the old-fashioned show, your senses are going to be rocked. It is a hardcore Chicago ... it is a bada bing Chicago.''