5 reasons to see The King and I in the West End
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The transfer of the sweeping epic musical, “The King and I” opens this month in London (tickets are available on TodayTix now) and we couldn’t be more excited.
The show follows widowed school teacher Anna as she arrives in Siam. She’s there to teach the children of the King, but finds more than she bargained for inside the walls of the beautiful palace.
If you’re not familiar with this iconic show, or this transferring production, here are five reasons you should see it!
1. Tony Winner Kelli O’Hara is making her West End debut
The Tony Award-winning actress Kelli O’Hara will star as Anna, the strong-willed schoolteacher who dares to question the powerful King of Siam (Ken Watanabe) in “The King and I”. It will be Kelli’s West End debut having kept musical theatre fans waiting years for her to work in London. If you’ve never made it over to the US to Kelli on Broadway, you may have recently seen her in season two of the hit Netflix show 13 Reasons Why.
2. It’s going to be big!
This production, straight from Broadway, is going to be huge. Not only is the cast massive, but the grandeur of the design is set to be pretty stunning. Depicting the grand palace of Siam and the country surrounding it, this will be a spectacular show to see on the giant stage at the Palladium Theatre.
3. The costumes will be gorgeous
The costumes in “The King and I” are designed by six-time Tony Award-winner, Catherine Zuber. The actors will be dressed in sumptuous silks reflecting the wealth and regality of the King’s palace, wives and courtiers, while Anna will be in traditional Western gowns. One purple ball gown in particular is a real showstopper – it took 450 hours, 30 pounds of fabric and 20 yards of silk to create the dress.
4. The music is classic Rodgers and Hammerstein
Get a taste of the iconic, sweeping score of the “The King and I” from the production’s performance at the 2015 Tony Awards. If you think you don’t know the music of the show, you probably do and don’t even realise it. The show features “Getting to Know You” and “Shall We Dance?” to name just a few.
And that amazing ball gown we mentioned before? Watch the video for Kelli’s quick change into it and see how she manages to dance so elegantly in it too!
5. It’s a multi-award-winning show
“The King and I” has already got a serious trophy collection. The Broadway production was nominated for 12 awards, winning five of them, including the Tony Award for Best Revival of a Musical and the Drama Desk award for Outstanding Revival of a Musical. Will it be the big winner at the Olivier Awards in 2019?