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Monstrous King Kong Musical Announces Lead Cast & New Songwriters for Australian World Premiere


Hollywood’s most famous primate is roaring onto the Australian stage! The new stage musical King Kong has announced its leading cast, as well as the musicians who will contribute to the show’s ambitious score when it makes its world premiere at the Regent Theatre in Melbourne, Australia on June 15, 2013.

The cast will feature Esther Hannaford (Hairspray) as Ann Darrow, Adam Lyon as Carl Denham, Chris Ryan as Jack Driscoll, Richard Piper as Captain Engelhorn and Queenie van de Zandt as Cassandra. The company boasts a cast of 49 actors, dancers, circus performers and puppeteers and a one-ton, six-meter giant silverback puppet (which a press release for the productions boasts may be “arguably the most technologically advanced puppet in the world”).

Set against the backdrop of bustling New York City in the 1930s, King Kong will tells the story of the infamous ape and his encounter with aspiring actress Ann Darrow, megalomaniac filmmaker Carl Denham, stubborn first mate Jack Driscoll and the people of New York.

The show’s score will be created by composer Marius de Vries and will consist of revamped 1930s Broadway songs like “Get Happy,” “I Wanna Be Loved By You” and “Brother Can You Spare a Dime,” as well as new and existing numbers from artists like Sarah McLachlan, Robert Del Naja, Justice, Guy Garvey and The Avalanches. Michael Mitnick and Stephen Pavlovic have contributed to the musical score.

King Kong will be directed by Daniel Kramer and feature a book by Craig Lucas, choreography by John O’Connell, production design by Peter England, creature design by Sonny Tilders, costumes by Roger Kirk, lighting by Peter Mumford, sound by Peter Hylenski, projections by Frieder Weiss, aerial and circus direction by Gavin Robins and puppetry direction by Peter Wilson.


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