Lea Salonga to star in PH production of 'Fun Home'
MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – Broadway star and Voice of the Philippines coach Lea Salonga will star in the Manila production of Fun Home in 2016, under Atlantis Productions.
Lea said in a piece for the Inquirer that she will play the role of Helen Bechdel, the mother of the lead character Alison, in the production.
"Allow me to also announce that I will be playing Helen Bechdel. And that Fun Home’s creators, Jeanine Tesori and Lisa Kron, will be coming to Manila as well!" she wrote.
She will be joined by Katie Bradshaw in the role of young Alison, alternating with Andee Achacoso.
Ten-year-old Katie has already appeared in musicals like The Sound of Music and Shrek. In a press release, she said about performing alongside Lea: "I am so excited to work with her because I think she will help me evolve as a performer. I can learn so much just by being around her, listening to her and watching her."
Andee, 11, who performed in Scrooge and Pinocchio, echoed this sentiment about the Broadway star – as quoted in a press release: "I can't believe I am performing with her. She has been my idol ever since I discovered theatre. This is such a great opportunity to learn from her, but I must admit that I am a little nervous about working with my idol!"
Lea also wrote about why the award-winning material stood out for her: "I don’t recall a musical having that kind of effect. No big dance numbers, no large cast. Just a story about a family and its unique brand of dysfunction so specific, we all could find something to relate to."
"We're thrilled to have the first international production of Fun Home confirmed for the Philippines, and how exciting to have Lea Salonga, one of Broadway’s most beloved stars, leading the company," the producers told the New York Times.
Based on cartoonist Alison Bechdel's graphic memoir, Fun Home tells the story of Alison and the conflicts she faces as she comes to terms with her family and identity. The musical won 5 Tony Awards in 2015 including Best Musical.
Fun Home will run from November 11 to 27 at the Carlos P Romulo Auditorium in RCBC Plaza, Makati City. – Rappler.com