* Limited Visibility
Tickets on sale on 25 November.
It is with great pride that Opera Australia and John Frost bring this world-famous production back home for a season at the Princess Theatre. Tickets go on sale on 25 November.
Lisa McCune and Jason Scott Lee will star in the Tony Award-winning Australian production.
This now legendary production of The King and I won the triple crown of awards: The Tony, the Drama Desk and the Outer Critics Circle for Best Musical Revival. Further Tony and Drama Desk awards included Best Scenic Design and Best Costume Design, and a Laurence Olivier Award nomination.
Much-loved Australian actress and four-time Gold Logie winner Lisa McCune plays English governess Anna Leonowens. International stage and screen star Jason Scott Lee will play the King of Siam. Lee played the King to much acclaim at the London Palladium in 2000-01.
Chinese-born Australian opera singer Shu-Cheen Yu plays Lady Thiang, the King’s chief wife, returning to the production 23 years after playing the young Burmese slave girl Tuptim in 1991.
Adrian Li Donni is Lun Tha, the Burmese scholar and envoy who is secretly in love with Tuptim, a role he played for the Production Company in Melbourne in 2010 and in the US the year before that.
Shall we dance?
On a bright cloud of music shall we fly?
Shall we dance?
Shall we then say goodnight
and mean goodbye?
Shall we indulge our love for the genius of Rodgers and Hammerstein with one of their most celebrated masterpieces, The King and I? Shall we? Yes.
It is 1861. Anna Leonowens, a young English widow, has been engaged to teach the many children and wives of the ruler of Siam. When she and her son arrive at the Royal Palace they do not know what to expect.
Whilst the sumptuous costumes and gilded sets have travelled the world, it all started in Australia, with a dream to create a version which was not just a remake of the iconic 1956 film, but a real consideration of this clash of cultures and meeting of minds.
Christopher Renshaw was the perfect choice of director and together with Brian Thomson he travelled to Thailand, where they discovered a deep affection for the rich and nuanced culture of Siam.
Australian costume designer Roger Kirk joined and an award-winning creative team was born.
When Richard Rodgers’ daughter, Mary Rodgers, saw it, she declared it the best King and I she had ever experienced.
“I was dazzled,” she enthused. “I actually thought that Chris had changed and improved some lines. But he hadn’t changed anything. He’d just found how to emphasise certain things.”
The production premiered at the Adelaide Festival Theatre in 1991, followed by a highly successful Australian tour. The show reopened at the Neil Simon Theatre on Broadway in 1996, followed by a US tour, then transferred to the London Palladium in 2000, where it played for nearly two years before embarking on a UK tour.
Audiences were thrilled by the period costumes – including Anna’s enormous crinoline skirts – and by the lavish, meticulously researched sets.
With these insights, an exotic fairytale becomes spiced with real culture and real human emotion.
Don’t miss this dazzling display of the beloved Rodgers and Hammerstein musical.
|Music by||Richard Rodgers|
|Book and Lyrics by||Oscar Hammerstein II|
|Based on 'Anna and the King' by||Margaret Langdon|
|Original choreography||Jerome Robbins|
|Scenic Designer||Brian Thomson|
|Costume Designer||Roger Kirk|
|Lighting Designer||Nigel Levings|
|Music Director||Peter Casey|
|Orchestrations by||Robert Russell Bennett|
|Dance and Instrumental
music arranged by
|Anna Leonowens||Lisa McCune|
|King of Siam||Jason Scott Lee|
|Lady Thiang||Shu-Cheen Yu|
|Lun Tha||Adrian Li Donni|
This production of The King and I is based on the John Frost and Adelaide Festival Centre production first performed on 11 June 1991.
'He (Jason Scott Lee) is utterly convincing, with sharp timing and delivery. He is very adept at capturing both the compassion and humour of the King, along with his menacing presence.'
London Theatre Archive
'The King and I is an upstoppable smash.'
The Daily Express, UK