New Broadway Sir Knighted at Monty Python's Spamalot

News   New Broadway Sir Knighted at Monty Python's Spamalot Lewis Cleale has joined the cast of the 2005 Tony Award-winning Best Musical Monty Python's Spamalot, replacing original Tony-nominated star Christopher Sieber.

Sieber quietly ended his scheduled run with the musical over the July 1-2 weekend. Cleale began in the roles of Sir Dennis Galahad, The Black Knight and Prince Herbert’s Father — which Sieber originated on Broadway — with the July 3 performance.

Cleale has previously played on Broadway in Amour, Once Upon a Mattress and Swinging on a Star and has been seen Off-Broadway in Time & Again, A New Brain and Encores!' Call Me Madam. Other credits include the national tours of Sunset Boulevard, South Pacific and Mamma Mia!

The actor joins the current cast which features Harry Groener (Crazy For You, Oklahoma) as King Arthur with Martin Moran (The Tricky Part, Cabaret) and Steve Kazee (The Subject Was Roses, Seascape) — as knights Sir Robin and Sir Lancelot, respectively.

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Mike Nichols ("The Graduate," "Angels in America") directed and Casey Nicholaw (The Drowsy Chaperone) choreographed the show inspired by the 1975 feature film comedy "Monty Python and the Holy Grail" which landed at Broadway's Shubert Theatre for a St. Valentine's Day (Feb. 14, 2005) start and a St. Patrick's Day (March 17) opening. Spamalot tells the tale of King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table on their quest from God for the Holy Grail - with a short stop in the dazzling Spam-filled land of Camelot.

The musical features a book by Eric Idle based on the screenplay he co-wrote with Monty Python creators Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones and Michael Palin. The new score — with music and lyrics by Idle and composer John Du Prez ("A Fish Called Wanda") — includes songs ("Brave Sir Robin" and "Knights of the Round Table") from the original film as well as Python signature "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life."

Spamalot took home prizes at the 2005 Tony Awards for Best Musical, Best Direction (Nichols) and Featured Actress (Sara Ramirez). The original Decca Broadway cast album earned the 2006 Grammy Award for Best Musical Show Album. A national tour launched earlier this year from Boston's Colonial Theatre and performs as venues across the country through Aug. 2007. A Las Vegas run (at the Wynn Las Vegas resort's forthcoming Grail Theatre) is in the works.

The show website can be found at www.montypythonsspamalot.com.