First Look: Production images of the London cast of The King and I
THE KING AND I has broken the box office record for the biggest grossing week in the London Palladium history, grossing £1,058,317.50 for the week ending 30 June.
The show’s extension at London Palladium was announced for a final three weeks until Saturday 29 September. This is the very last opportunity West End audiences will have to see the Broadway stars reprise their original roles on the London stage, as Kelli O’Hara will return to Broadway to star inKiss Me Kate and Ken Watanabe has filming commitments.
Five extra matinees on Thursdays (30 August, 6, 13, 20 and 27 September) have been added to the London Palladium performance schedule. This follows continued unprecedented demand for tickets, with early performances already sold out. Much like it’s acclaimed 16 month run at New York’s Lincoln Center Theater and record-breaking sold out USA tour, The King & I is tipped to be London’s must-see musical of 2018.
Dean John-Wilson played the title role in Aladdin at the Prince Edward Theatre and was a semi-finalist on Britain’s Got Talent in 2008. His other theatre credits include: Miss Atomic Bomb and Songs For a New World at The St James’ Theatre, Aquino in Here Lies Love at the National Theatre, Tim Rice’s From Here to Eternity at the Shaftesbury Theatre and Sister Act: The Musical UK Tour.
Netherlands born Na-Young Jeon played Gigi in the international tour of Miss Saigon and Fantine in Les Misérables in South Korea and in the West End. Other theatre work includes Esmerelda in Notre Dame de Paris in South Korea and Bianca in Kiss Me Kate in Amsterdam. On TV she played the lead in Conny and Clydeand Bo in Van Hier Tot Tokio and her films include The Calling and Hitomi.
Acclaimed Tony Award-winning Bartlett Sher will direct the production, hot on the heels of his work on The Lincoln Center Theater’s World Premiere of J.T. Rogers’ smash hit play Oslo, which opened on Broadway and then transferred via the National Theatre to London’s Harold Pinter Theatre in October last year to rave reviews. He, along with the celebrated creative team behind the award-winning production of South Pacific and the Lincoln Center Theater production of My Fair Lady which began previews this week, will reunite to bring this majestic production to life at the London Palladium.
With music by Richard Rodgers, book and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II, this masterpiece – one of their finest works – boasts a score featuring such beloved classics as Getting To Know You, Hello Young Lovers, Shall We Dance, I Have Dreamed, and Something Wonderful. Set in 1860s Bangkok, the musical tells the story of the unconventional and tempestuous relationship that develops between the King of Siam and Anna Leonowens, a British schoolteacher, whom the imperious King brings to Siam to tutor his many wives and children.