Lee (Pacific Overtures, Yellow Face, Flower Drum Song, "Banshee") succeeds Jose Llana (Here Lies Love), who departed the production Sept. 27. Ken Watanabe earned a Tony Award nomination for originating the role in the revival. Lee co-stars with 2015 Tony-winning Best Actress in a Musical Kelli O'Hara. The cast also features Here Lies Love alumni Conrad Ricamora and Tony winner Ruthie Ann Miles, who play Lun Tha and Lady Thiang, respectively.
Bartlett Sher, who earned a Tony Award for the 2008 Lincoln Center Theater Broadway revival of South Pacific, directed The King and I, which opened April 16 at the Vivian Beaumont Theater and won the 2015 Tony Award as Best Revival of a Musical.
The principal cast also includes Ashley Park (Mamma Mia!) as Tuptim, Edward Baker-Duly (Peter and the Starcatcher) as Sir Edward Ramsey, Jon Viktor Corpuz (A Midsummer Night's Dream) as Prince Chulalongkorn, Murphy Guyer (South Pacific) as Captain Orton, Jakes Lucas (Newsies) as Louis, Paul Nakauchi (Chu Chem) as Kralahome and Marc Oka (Anything Goes) as Phra Alack.
Also featured are Edward Baker-Duly, Jon Viktor Corpuz, Murphy Guyer, Jake Lucas, Paul Nakauchi, Adriana Braganza, Amaya Braganza, LaMae Caparas, Hsin-Ping Chang, Andrew Cheng, Ann Sanders, Julius Sermonia, Atsuhisa Shinomiya, Emily Stillings, Michiko Takemasa, Stephanie Jae Park, Bobby Pestka, William Poon, Emilio Ramos, Brian Rivera, Bennyroyce Royon, Kelvin Moon Loh, Paul HeeSang Miller, Rommel Pierre O'Choa, Arisa Odaka, Yuki Ozeki, James Ignacio, Misa Iwama, Jim Kaplan, Christie Kim, Mindy Lai Analisa Leaming, Q Lim, Lynn Masako Cheng, Olivia Chun, Ali Ewoldt, Bonale Fambrini Ethan Halford Holder, MaryAnn Hu, Kei Tsuruharatani, Christopher Vo, Rocco Wu, XiaoChuan Xie, Timothy Yang and Minami Yusui. The revival has choreography by Tony Award winner Christopher Gattelli (South Pacific, Newsies) based on the original choreography by Jerome Robbins. The original Robert Russell Bennett orchestrations are also being used with dance and incidental music arranged by Trude Rittmann.
The King and I reunites Sher with his Tony-winning South Pacific creative team, including scenic designer Michael Yeargan, costume designer Catherine Zuber, lighting designer Donald Holder, sound designer Scott Lehrer and musical director Ted Sperling. Casting is by Telsey + Company/Abbie Brady-Dalton, CSA.
The Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II musical, based on the life of Anna Leonowens as well as Margaret Landon's 1944 novel "Anna and the King of Siam," includes classics such as "Hello Young Lovers," "I Whistle A Happy Tune," "Shall We Dance?" and "Getting To Know You."
The original production opened March 29, 1951, at the St. James Theatre. It starred Yul Brynner and Gertrude Lawrence and ran for 1,246 performances. The King and I has been revived on Broadway three times; the most recent production starred Donna Murphy and Lou Diamond Phillips.
According to LCT, "Set in 1860's 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."