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November 22, 2018 By simplyk   Comments Off on Kelli O’Hara and Will Chase Introduce Their ‘Reexamined’ Kiss Me, Kate 2019, Broadway, Kiss Me Kate

Currently, this spring’s production of Kiss Me, Kate is the only musical revival announced for the 2019 Broadway season, but its stars Kelli O’Hara and Will Chase promise it won’t be the traditional restaging you expect. Clad in glamorous costumes from Lilli Vanessi and Fred Graham, the stars spoke with Vulture at the show’s first photo shoot, and they promised that the essential elements of Samuel and Bella Spewack and Cole Porter’s 1948 musical (about feuding actors staging a musical version of The Taming of the Shrew) will be in place, but noted that there might be some aspects that need a second look.

“Of course you’re not going to update it, really. But you’re telling this play in this time, in this consciousness,” said Chase, who’s returning to Broadway after spending time as a country star on TV in Nashville, “The estate, rightly so, says, ‘Don’t change too much,’ because we don’t want to change what this show really is, but I think there are things within it.” He noted that the show’s production team will meet before rehearsals to talk about the script, which, like those of other recent revivals (e.g., Carousel or My Fair Lady), depicts dated gender dynamics potentially ripe for revision. That team includes director Scott Ellis as well as lyricist Amanda Green, who will contribute additional material to the revival.

“I think that you can look at it and be overwhelmed with how much needs to be reexamined,” O’Hara said of Kiss Me, Kate. “Then, you can step back and watch it for the period that it is, to see how far we’ve come.” To that end, O’Hara said she was impressed by how little Green had suggested altering — in some cases, only a word — in order to shift the overall interpretation. “My very last song is ‘I Am Ashamed That Women Are So Simple,” O’Hara said. “I believe it will be that ‘I Am Ashamed That Humans Are So Simple.’ We’re not trying to change it to the opposite effect — I’m ashamed that men are so simple, or something. We’re trying to unify, to find some sort of coverage that includes everybody being fallible.”

There are also ways in which the leads may simply approach the standard material in their own way. “For me, there’s never been a reason to do a revival in there unless I make it something different,” O’Hara, a Tony winner for The King and I, said, noting that she doesn’t want to “throw actors under the bus” as a profession by making the central relationship too silly, and that she wants to find a new angle on Vanessi’s rousing solo “I Hate Men.” To O’Hara, at a moment when women’s anger is fiercer than ever, the character’s anger isn’t a joke: “It’s to be carefully crafted and not throwing things and ranting and raving so that men can toss us off as shrewish, naggy witches.”

Any new take the two are considering on Kiss Me, Kate won’t preclude the show’s essential comedy, however. Chase and O’Hara worked together both in a benefit reading of the musical and other productions, including a 100th anniversary production of Oklahoma! in Oklahoma. They are excited to reunite for Kate, which starts performances February 14 at Studio 54. “We just like to make each other laugh,” Chase said.

If there’s an advantage to doing a revival, it’s that the base elements are already there. The music, for instance, does already work. “If you can lose yourself in Cole Porter’s score, you do feel something that’s worthy of hope,” O’Hara said. “Toe-tapping and gorgeous dance numbers that’ll be choreographed so beautifully, that old-fashioned musical comedy that just makes people happy — there’s nothing wrong with that right now.”


November 22, 2018 By simplyk   Comments Off on Watch a clip from Kelli O’Hara and Ken Watanabe’s The King and I before it comes to theaters Uncategorized
November 20, 2018 at 05:48 PM EST

For those who didn’t get to see the Tony-winning revival of The King and I when it was on Broadway in 2015, or when it transferred to London’s West End this past summer, you’ve now got another chance: Just whistle a happy tune as you head to your local movie theater.

The classic Rodgers and Hammerstein musical is making a bow in cinemas with The King and I: Live From the London Palladium Theatre, showing on U.S. screens on select dates via Trafalgar Releasing. Kelli O’Hara and Ken Watanabe reprised their Broadway roles as Anna and the King of Siam, as did Ruthie Ann Miles, who won a Tony for playing Lady Thiang.

Above, you can see O’Hara — who won a Tony for her portrayal of the British schoolteacher hired by the king to tutor his children in 1860s Bangkok — and members of the musical’s ensemble singing one of its most iconic songs, “Getting to Know You.”

During a special screening of the film in New York last week, O’Hara and director Bartlett Sher joined EW to discuss their experiences working on the Broadway production and returning for the London run. During that chat, O’Hara said she was surprised by the depth of what she learned from playing Anna over these last few years.

“[Initially] I thought I’m gonna do this easy, ‘Whistle a Happy Tune,’ ‘Getting to Know You’ musical, and what surprised me was I learned more about myself, about the world — the way I felt about it, and what it means to have a voice — than I’ll ever know,” she said. “I learned so much from playing this woman, and I continue to.”

“Getting To Know You” became an anthem of sorts for O’Hara, because the (deceptively) simple, incredibly hummable song is about people coming together despite their differences and trying to understand one another. “To me, everything I wanted the show to be about was about that song,” she said. “Getting to like you, getting to hope you like me. Just trying to understand each other and trying to plead and say, ‘I see the best in you, and I want you to see the best in me.’ That’s how I felt it every night.”

Matthew Murphy

Sher — who directed the well-received revival of My Fair Lady this year and is bringing the Aaron Sorkin-adapted To Kill a Mockingbird to Broadway — also shared that getting to revisit the production for the London transfer allowed him and the cast to re-examine their show. “We had an amazing opportunity, which you don’t always get, when you work on something for a long time and then let it go away for a while and then you come back to it. Suddenly you walk through it as an artist, [and you think,] ‘Oh my God, this is what I did, why did I do that?’… There are very subtle ways in which it changes, we pushed it to new places. You just get to reignite the questions you asked the first time and balance them against the new person you are, and see where you are with that.”

The duo also discussed the balances between retelling a classic, beloved tale and finding its relevancy in a more modern era. One example they gave was Miles’ perceptive and emotional performance as Lady Thiang, who gently but knowingly guides Anna in her interactions with the king. “In 2015, we were on the verge of maybe electing a woman for president, we were feeling all those feels at the time,” said O’Hara. “Doing it in 2018 was a whole different story, but at that time you take someone like Lady Thiang and the way Ruthie played it — which was in large part an idea that Bart had, which was that Lady Tiang is the Hillary Clinton. She is the one running the show. I loved the idea that she was the most powerful woman in the kingdom.

Details on showtimes and tickets for The King and I: Live From the London Palladium Theatre can be found at the film’s website.


The King and I (Stage)

Bartlett Sher
The King and I (Stage)
November 18, 2018 By simplyk   Comments Off on Kelli O’Hara: Me Too made every woman feel like an idiot for a minute 2019


The Broadway star said the theatre industry still has a way to go for gender parity.

The Me Too movement has “probably made every woman feel for a minute like an idiot”, Broadway star Kelli O’Hara has said.

The actress, who recently concluded a run of The King & I in London’s Palladium, said it has made women reflect differently on experiences they have had in their past.

She told the Press Association: “It’s been a heavy year, I think, for all of us.

“I think all of us have probably gone back in our minds and realised things that probably we never really thought about.

“Or thought ‘Oh god I thought that was a friendship…’ or whatever it was, like a professional relationship, especially professional relationships.

“And things like that, I think it probably has made every woman feel for a minute like an idiot.

“That is one of the things that makes a woman stand up, whether she’s been abused or physically or mentally or sexually or whatever it is, I think that’s what makes every woman stand up and have a straighter back all of a sudden.

“I think, going forward, that’s what’s going to change. Maybe we’re going to raise our children differently, to talk about things, to put a stop to things.

“I have a boy and a girl, there’s something important for both of them to learn.

“That’s my hope, that we all start to just think differently, to open our minds, men and women, to how we treat each other, how we’re being treated, how we teach the next generation to treat and be treated.

“It has to be a movement. And the thing is you look back in history and movements, real change, is never seen in a moment. So, we just have to hope that, like I said for the next generation, that things will be different.”

O’Hara said there is still a way to go for gender parity in theatre, adding: “We need more female writers, we need more female directors, more female composers.

“We have the one but we need the ones who are out there to have more shots, to be trusted more. And therefore that you probably need more female producers.

“I have to say that for every woman I want to be in power, I’ve also had examples of really good men trying to do that. I’ve been directed by a lot of men who actually believe in women. And I think in musical theatre it can be a little different, because you have a lot of musicals where the woman is the lead.

“However, there’s still the man that comes in, in the love story, it’s always the innocent little woman and the man kind of the one who has the conflict. There’s probably pay discrepancy that we need to get inside.”

She added: “I can’t say, as a musical theatre actress in theatre, that I’ve been treated unfairly too many times, but I’ve watched it happen.

“We need to put women in powerful positions in every one of them in order to have equal representation and make sure that, across the board, our female creators are getting the same treatment as, say, a leading lady.”

O’Hara said it was important that the production of The King & I, which will screen in UK cinemas on November 29, reflects more modern racial and gender politics.

She said: “In our production it was really important that we spent much less time on the actual musical that’s been done a million times, and much more time on the actual politics and the history of what was happening right then and there during that time.

“I feel like we’re doing all that we can to really focus on the gender inequality, to focus on bridging the gaps between people of different cultures, I think we’re trying to do our best in 2018 to make this story relevant and important, which I think it is.”

The King and I: From The London Palladium will be in UK cinemas on November 29.


November 9, 2018 By simplyk   Comments Off on New King and I video Uncategorized

November 9, 2018 By simplyk   Comments Off on Exclusive Music Video! Watch Kelli O’Hara Sing ‘So in Love’ from KISS ME, KATE 2019, Broadway, Kiss Me Kate, Video

Can't wait for KISS ME, KATE? Watch Kelli O'Hara hit the studio to perform "So in Love."

For tickets & info: bit.ly/rtcKissMeKate

Slået op af Roundabout Theatre CompanyOnsdag den 7. november 2018

November 7, 2018 By simplyk   Comments Off on Front Row: Kelli O’Hara, Days of Rage & a FootlooseReunion 2019, Broadway, Kiss Me Kate, Video


October 5, 2018 By simplyk   Comments Off on New movie role for Kelli! Uncategorized

October 2, 2018 By simplyk   Comments Off on Kelli O’Hara on performing in the West End: ‘I’m sure I’ll be back’ Uncategorized

The Broadway star wraps up in The King and I this week

Bartlett Sher’s production of The King and I concludes its West End run this week, and Tony Award-winning star of the show Kelli O’Hara reflected on her time appearing as Anna in the musical as well as what the future holds.

Talking at the Stage Debut Awards, O’Hara said: “I’ll always miss playing the role on stage and I’ll miss the group of people at the Palladium. But my family’s gone home now and I can’t wait to be back with them.”

O’Hara first took on the role opposite Ken Watanabe back in 2015 when the production first premiered at the Lincoln Center, with the West End production opening earlier this year.

“We knew that this stage would come and I can’t believe it’s happened after several years. These things make you nostalgic – a part of you is excited to move on, but you always get sad for what came before. That’s what life’s about.

“I’m embracing the moment and just taking this last week of shows and really loving them.”

While playing the role on Broadway, O’Hara won the Best Actress in a Musical Tony Award, with the show winning four Tonys in total.

O’Hara was nominated for the Best West End Debut Award at the Stage Debut Awards, losing out in the end to The Lieutenant of Inishmore and Poldark star Aidan Turner.

But it sounds like she’ll be back in London soon: “I’m totally hooked by London and would live here in a second. There’s so much I know I have to do and am sure I’ll be back.”

The Palladium production of The King and I will be screened in cinemas later this year.


October 2, 2018 By simplyk   Comments Off on Reception & Rally for Drew Edmondson featuring Kelli O’Hara Uncategorized




September 19, 2018 By simplyk   Comments Off on Take a look of the filming of The King and I Video