West End musical regular Dave Willetts, whose credits include Phantom of the Opera, Les Misérables and Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, will star as Emile de Becque. The woman he will meet "across a crowded room" will be Helena Blackman, runner-up in the BBC's "How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria?" Blackman's additional credits include Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz at the Leicester Haymarket Theatre.
The tour begins performances Aug. 24 at the Grand Theatre in Blackpool, and will continue on to Hull, Stoke, Manchester, Edinburgh, Oxford, Wimbledon, Swansea, Birmingham, Sunderland, Nottingham and Londonderry in 2007 followed by Woking, Sheffield, Milton Keynes, Belfast, Dartford, York, Glasgow, Liverpool, Wolverhampton, Southampton, Cambridge, Bristol, Brighton, Torquay, Darlington, Rhyl, Bradford, Norwich, Derby, Malvern and Southend in 2008.
The creative team for the UK tour of South Pacific includes choreography from Chris Hocking and musical supervision by Gareth Williams. Set design is by Charles Camm, with costumes by Elizabeth Dennis, lighting design by David Howe and sound design by Ross Portway and Jon Higson. Julian Woolford directs.
Rodgers and Hammerstein's score for South Pacific boasts a score of American classics including "Some Enchanted Evening", "Younger Than Springtime", "Happy Talk", "Bali H'ai", "Wonderful Guy" and "There Is Nothing Like a Dame."
Additional casting will be announced at a later date. Lincoln Center Theater will stage a Broadway revival of the classic in spring 2008.