New Musical: King Kong workshops bound for Sydney understands that the Australian workshop of a musical version of King Kong has been cast and is scheduled to begin work in Sydney in July. understands that the Australian workshop of a musical version of King Kong has been cast and is scheduled to begin work in Sydney in July.

Following a recent audition series, the first workshop of the brand new musical is set to commence with some of Australia’s leading musical theatre performers. 

Produced by Global Creatures, the Australian company which brought Walking with Dinosaurs to the world stage, the show is rumoured to be aiming for a 2013 Broadway opening. 

Set in New York City in 1933, at the height of the great Depression, the show aims to “preserve the classic story yet look at it through a contemporary cultural lens,” says producer Carmen Pavlovic. After being given the green light from the estate of Merian C. Cooper (creator of King Kong), it has been announced that the production will eventually feature a cast of more than 40 singers, actors, dancers and puppeteers and feature animatronics and projections. 

The show features a book by Craig Lucas, the Tony Award nominated librettist of The Light In The Piazza, and will also feature music by Grammy nominated composer and producer Marius de Vries. (It is understood that de Vries will be arranging some existing period music for the show, also). Leading the creative team will be director Daniel Kramer, Peter England (production design), Sonny Tilders (creature design), John O’Connell (choreography), Roger Kirk (costume design), Peter Mumford (lighting design), Gavin Robins (aerial/circus direction), and Frieder Weiss (projection design).  

Craig Lucas explained his involvement with what is sure to be a mega-budget musical, saying in a statement, “I am thrilled to be part of this project, working with a team of world-class colleagues, a producing dynamo, on a myth that speaks to man’s precarious relation to the natural world, poised as we are right now between annihilation and a slim chance of salvation.”

King Kong is the third new musical this year to be handed to Australian performers for a pseudo out-of-town try out. Love Never Dies, and Dr. Zhivago have both premiered as brand new productions this year, both with aspirations for Broadway runs if the Australian seasons fare well. 



Erin James

Erin James is's former Editor in Chief and a performer on both stage and screen. Credits include My Fair Lady, South Pacific and The King and I (Opera Australia), Love Never Dies and Cats (Really Useful Group), Blood Brothers (Enda Markey Presents), A Place To Call Home (Foxtel/Channel 7) and the feature film The Little Death (written and directed by Josh Lawson).

Erin James

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