Adelaide and London based theatre producer GWB Entertainment has opened the iconic musical production of The King and I to rave reviews and critical acclaim at the world-renowned London Palladium in the West End.
Hailed as “London’s theatrical event of 2018” by the Daily Express (UK), the Rogers and Hammerstein’s musical is given new life in a lavish production directed by Bartlett Sher. This rich and vibrant story of an unconventional and tempestuous relationship between the King of Siam and a British school teacher brings to life the timeless tale of love and makes it relevant, entertaining and ready to be enjoyed by the next generation of musical theatre lovers.
GWB Entertainment is coproducing the London season of The King and I which comes direct from an award-winning season on Broadway where it won four Tony Awards at New York’s Lincoln Theatre Center with Trafalgar Entertainment Group
Leading an outstanding cast of international performers and reprising the title roles of Anna and The King, are Tony Award-winning actress Kelli O’Hara and Tony and Oscar nominee Ken Watanabe. O’Hara and Watanabe, who both make their West End debuts, are hailed as “sublime” by British Theatre (UK). Joining them is Tony Award winning actress Ruthie Ann Miles who shares the role of Lady Thiang with stage and screen actress Naoko Mori (Torchwood, Everest, Absolutely Fabulous). Also joining the cast is foremost Japanese film and television star Takao Osawa as Kralahome together with West End star of Aladdin Dean John-Wilson and actress Na-Young Jeon who play the young lovers Lun Tha and Tuptim.
The King and I marks the first West End production for GWB Entertainment directors Richelle and Torben Brookman, Paul Warwick Griffin and Gareth Hewitt Williams, after trailblazing the development of musical theatre in China and other Asia Pacific territories.
“It’s extremely satisfying breathing new life into familiar productions, seeking new insights and surprises from a classical repertoire. We’re finding that audiences continue to show their love of musical theatre the world over and The King and I is no exception. This is our first West End production and to take residency at London’s Palladium Theatre where it received a standing ovation at its premiere performance is the stuff dreams are made of. We’re thrilled and overwhelmed and look forward to London audiences falling in love with this spectacular show,” said GWB Entertainment Director Richelle Brookman.
It’s been an incredibly busy year for the theatre production team who are based in Adelaide and London and the pace continues throughout the second half of 2018.
“We started the year with 1984 by George Orwell opening at the Auckland Arts Festival and the Singapore International Arts Festival. The King and I brought us to London before we head back to Australia to open The Rocky Horror Show at Her Majesty’s Theatre in Melbourne on July 18. From there we head to South Africa to open Matilda in Johannesburg on October 21 and then School of Rock opens in Melbourne on November 6,” said Paul Warwick Griffin.
The King and I plays at the London Palladium in the West End for 14 weeks until September 28.
“What a treat. Book now. It’s a hit. ★★★★★” – The Times (UK)
“This production of The King and I is the Rolls Royce of theatrical revivals.” – British Theatre UK
“Looks and sounds ravishing. Complete rapture.” – The Telegraph (UK)
“Truly majestic. With romance and warm humour, stunning costumes and a sublime set list, the slow- burning relationship between Anna (Kelli O’Hara) and the irrepressible King (Ken Watanabe) will bring tears to your eyes by the closing scene.” – OK Magazine