Theatre News

Your Lie in April announces West End lead casting

The celebrated musical will have a full-length West End run this summer

 Dean John-Wilson, Mia Kobayashi, Zheng Xi Yong (photo by Ruth Crafer), and Rachel Clare Chan (photo by Ori Jones). All images sent by the production.
Dean John-Wilson, Mia Kobayashi, Zheng Xi Yong (photo by Ruth Crafer), and Rachel Clare Chan (photo by Ori Jones). All images sent by the production.

Exclusive: Lead casting has been revealed for Your Lie in April as it prepares for its West End run.

Considered one of the most popular romantic stories and greatest tearjerkers in Japanese manga history, the show follows a young piano prodigy who is unable to perform following his mother’s death. His life then changes when he strikes a friendship with a talented violinist.

The manga, published in 2011, has since sold over 7.5 million copies in 17 countries. It was adapted into a 22-part anime TV series in 2014, and a Japanese live-action film in 2016. The Japanese musical, now translated, was first seen in 2022. 

The theatrical production, which has music by Frank Wildhorn, lyrics by Carly Robyn Green and Tracy Miller, English book by Rinne B Groff, music arrangement and orchestration by Jason Howland and original book by Riko Sakaguchi, was first seen on UK shores at Theatre Royal Drury Lane, where the piece played three concerts.

A fully staged iteration of the show will now play this summer at the Harold Pinter Theatre, opening late next month (28 June) and playing through to 21 September.

Leading the show will be Zheng Xi Yong (Spring Awakening) as Kosei Arima, Rachel Clare Chan (Oliver!) as Tsubaki Sawabe and Dean John-Wilson (The King and I) as Ryota Watari, who all starred in the concert version of the show last month at Theatre Royal Drury Lane. They are joined by Mia Kobayashi, making her professional debut, as Kaori Miyazono.

Every seat at the first five previews – more than 5,500 in total – is priced at £25. Tickets are on sale now.

The production team includes director and choreographer Nick Winston, co-director Jordan Murphy, musical supervisor Katy Richardson, musical director and conductor Chris Poon, set designer Justin Williams, costume designer Kimie Nakano, sound designers Rob Bettle for Sound Quiet Time and Adam Fisher, lighting designer Rory Beaton, and video designer Dan Light. Orchestral management is handled by Rich Morris for Music Solutions Ltd, with production manager Toby P Darvill, and casting director Harry Blumenau.

Also attached are associate director and choreographer Tommy Franzen, associate musical supervisor and associate musical director Chris Ma, associate set designer Christophe VandenEynde, assistant musical director Cerys McKenna, and costume supervisor Rachel Dickson.

The associate production team includes associate production manager Charlie Rayner, WHAM supervisor Becky Rungen, casting associate Laura Seaborn, and children’s casting assistant Nikki Seymour.

Company management features company manager Eric Lumsden, stage manager Sarah-Jane Ledbury, deputy stage manager Hannah Halden, and assistant stage managers Jinwen Chen and Alex Jaouen. The technical crew features head of sound Mike Poon, sound 3 Sarah Atherton-Knight, head of wardrobe Wendy Phillips, head of automation Sloane Jorba, deputy head of automation Ed Corazza, and head of WHAM Jessica McKeand.

Further cast and creative team are to be announced.

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Your Lie in April

Performances begin: 28 June 2024