Nearly 40 years after playing a secretary who takes revenge on her sexist boss in “9 to 5”, Dolly Parton again beat the drum for gender equality at the West End premiere of a musical version of her hit 1980 movie.
The country superstar joined the cast of “9 to 5 The Musical” for the curtain call at the end of Sunday’s official opening performance in London.
The musical is based on Parton’s 1980 film of the same name, for which she wrote her iconic hit “9 to 5”. Parton played one of three women who worked for a sexist, egotistical boss in an office where women weren’t given the same opportunities or pay as their male colleagues.
She hoped the musical would help shine a light on sexual misconduct and gender inequality which, as the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements have shown, remain issues of concern in entertainment and other industries.
“The film really paved the way and things did change but there’s still a lot more to be done,” she told Reuters on the red carpet ahead of the show. “With people drawing attention again to equal pay, equal work, harassment in the workplace, this is just another good way for us to shine a light on some things that need to be lit up a little.”
The multiple Grammy winner also confirmed there will be a “9 to 5” movie sequel, starring the original cast – herself, Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin – alongside some “new young girls”.
Bookings for the musical at London’s Savoy Theatre are being taken through to August.