The multi-Tony Award-winning production of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s The King and I has set new lead casting as it continues to tour the UK and Ireland.
It has been confirmed that Annalene Beechey will reprise her role as Anna Leonowens in the show, joining Broadway star and film actor Darren Lee who continues in the title role of the King of Siam. The production is directed by Tony Award winner Bartlett Sher.
The show returns to venues all over the country this summer and autumn, visiting Glasgow, Newcastle, Stoke-On-Trent, Southampton, Belfast, and Dublin, with further dates to be added. A West End run will play at the Dominion Theatre early next year, led by Helen George.
Beechey expressed her excitement about reprising the role of Anna Leonowens, saying: “To sing such a wonderful classic score by Rodgers and Hammerstein is thrilling. That coupled with a glorious set, exquisite costumes and of course an incredible company of actors and musicians makes this the perfect show to bring to audiences around the country”.
The production will feature a company of performers including Dean John-Wilson, who will reprise his role as Lun Tha, Marienella Phillips as Tuptim, Cezarah Bonner as Lady Thiang, the King’s head wife, Kok-Hwa Lie as Kralahome, Caleb Lagayan as Prince Chulalongkorn, Sam Jenkins-Shaw as Captain Orton/Sir Edward Ramsay, and Maria Coyne as the Alternate Anna.
The ensemble includes Harry Altoft, Dexter Barry, Max Ivemey, and Charlie McGuire will play Louis, Anna’s son. The Royal children will be played by Bethany Campbell, Coco Bridger, Cody Concha, Ethan Fung, Dulcie-Bella Hackley, Caitlin Lau, Khun Cho Lwin, Angelica Quynh An Nguyen, Tenzin Noryang, Sabri Leonel Puci, Niall Rina, Francis Benedict Sarte, Mia Snowdon, Yuen Zhai, and Phoebe Zhao-Welsh.
The show is set in 1860s Bangkok and tells the story of the unconventional and tempestuous relationship that develops between the King of Siam and Anna Leonowens, a British schoolteacher whom the modernist King brings to Siam. The musical boasts one of the most well-known scores ever written, including “Whistle a Happy Tune”, “Getting to Know You”, and “Shall We Dance”.