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Exclusive: Once on This Island announces further lead casting and creative team

The Regent's Park Open Air Theatre revival begins performances in May

Gabrielle Brooks and Stephenson Ardern-Sodje

Following last night's exclusive reveal at the 23rd Annual WhatsOnStage Awards that Gabrielle Brooks (who gave a surprise performance of "Waiting for Life" at the ceremony) would be playing the lead role of Ti Moune in Regent's Park Open Air Theatre's upcoming revival of Once on This Island, additional casting and creative team information has now been released.

Joining the WhatsOnStage and Olivier Award nominee, who originated the role of Rita Marley in Get Up, Stand Up! The Bob Marley Musical in the West End, will be Stephenson Ardern-Sodje (Hamilton) as Daniel. The complete company will be announced in the coming weeks.

Under the direction of Ola Ince, the production's creative team is set to include Phil Bateman (musical supervisor), Niamh Gaffney (associate sound designer), freshly crowned WhatsOnStage Award winner Jessica Hung Han Yun (lighting designer), Niquelle LaTouche (associate choreographer), Nick Lidster (sound designer), Georgia Lowe (designer), Lindsay McAllister (associate director), Philip d'Orléans (fight director), Chris Poon (musical director), Kenrick ‘H2O' Sandy (choreographer), WhatsOnStage Award nominee Melissa Simon-Hartman (costume designer) and WhatsOnStage Award nominee Jacob Sparrow (casting director).

Ince commented: "Once on This Island is a poignant, moving and politically charged story. I'm thrilled to be working with an extraordinary talented team at Regent Park's Open Air Theatre; a place where true magic happens. It's a dream come true!."

Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty's 1990 musical, based on Rosa Guy's novel My Love, My Love, tells the story of a peasant girl Ti Moune (Brooks) who falls in love with a boy named Daniel (Ardern-Sodje). Their connection catches the attention of the gods around them. It won the 1995 Olivier Award for Best New Musical and the most recent Broadway staging took home the Tony for Best Revival of a Musical in 2017. A film adaptation is also reportedly in the works at Disney.

Once on This Island runs from 10 May to 10 June 2023 at Regent's Park Open Air Theatre.

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