Rodgers and Hammerstein’s timeless, golden-age classic The King and I is heading to London’s Dominion Theatre! Headed by Call the Midwife star Helen George, this royal, multi-award-winning production has already captured the hearts of audiences across the UK and will commence its West End performances on 20 January 2024! In this stunning story of East meets West, a world of tradition, love and politics awaits.
The story of The King and I
The early 1860s. Newly widowed Anna Leonowens boards a ship from England to the land of Bangkok, Siam. Reeling from her loss and seeking new adventures, Anna accepts the position of a schoolteacher for the royal children of the King of Siam.
Two strong-willed individuals from vastly different worlds, Anna and the King struggle to find common ground, as he aims to incorporate Western education, while she struggles with unfamiliar customs and traditions.
As their relationship progresses, both Anna and the King learn valuable lessons in understanding and respect, as they discover that love can conquer even the greatest of differences. Beneath the surface of their fiercely opinionated exchanges, a heartfelt love story unfolds, in what is one of the most endearing relationships to ever grace the stage.
The King and I history
In 1951, The King and I made its Broadway debut and became an instant success, running for three years and earning five Tony Awards, including Best Musical. The musical was adapted into a film in 1956, which became the second-highest-grossing film of the year and won five Academy Awards.
In 1996, the musical was revived on Broadway and went on to win the Tony Award, Drama Desk Award, and Outer Critics’ Circle Award for Best Musical Revival. Then, in 2015, a critically acclaimed revival starring Kelli O’Hara, Ken Watanabe, and Ruthie Ann Miles earned nine Tony nominations and won four, including Best Revival of a Musical.
The King and I is directed by Tony Award-winning director Bart Sher, known for his work on acclaimed Broadway productions such as South Pacific and My Fair Lady. The classic musical features book and lyrics by the legendary Oscar Hammerstein II and music by Richard Rodgers. Robert Rusell Bennett is responsible for orchestrations, Stephen Ridley will oversee musical supervision, and James Orange CDG will handle casting direction.
The talented cast includes Helen George, beloved for her role as Trixie on BBC One’s Call The Midwife, in the lead role of Anna, alongside Darren Lee as The King of Siam.
By Kevin Thomas