Author(s): Music by Richard Rodgers, lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II, book by Oscar Hammerstein II and Joshua Logan
Company: Chichester Festival Theatre
Running time: 2h 50min approx
1943. On an archipelago in the South Pacific Ocean, US troops are kicking their heels amid the cacao groves while restlessly waiting for the war to reach them.
Nellie Forbush, a navy nurse from Arkansas, finds herself falling for the French plantation owner, Emile de Becque—a man with a mysterious past. The scheming sailor Luther Billis runs a makeshift laundry to earn a quick buck, but he’s no match for the quick-witted Polynesian Bloody Mary who’s intent on exploiting these foreigners.
When young Princeton graduate Lieutenant Joe Cable is flown in on a dangerous reconnaissance mission, love and fear become entwined as the island’s battle for hearts and minds begins.
This much-loved, Tony and Pulitzer Prize-winning musical opened in 1949 to huge success, becoming one of Broadway’s longest running hit shows. It boasts one of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s most memorable scores, featuring songs such as "Some Enchanted Evening", "I’m Gonna Wash That Man Right Outa My Hair" and "Bali Ha’i".
This new production is directed by Artistic Director Daniel Evans whose previous Chichester productions include This Is My Family, Quiz and Fiddler on the Roof.
The cast includes Gina Beck (Matilda, Show Boat, Wicked, Phantom of the Opera) as Nellie, Julian Ovenden (Bridgerton, Downton Abbey, Merrily We Roll Along, Grand Hotel, BBC Proms) as Emile, Joanna Ampil (Cats, Les Misérables, Miss Saigon) as Bloody Mary, Keir Charles (who played Chris Tarrant in Quiz) and Rob Houchen (Les Misérables, The Light in the Piazza) as Cable.