Billy Elliot: Keean Johnson joins cast as Michael
Keean Johnson, will join the rotation in the role of 'Michael' with Trevor Braun in the cast of the 10-time Tony Award-winning Billy Elliot - The Musical.
Johnson, previously an understudy for the role of 'Michael,' replaces Tony-nominee David Bologna who played his final performance as 'Michael' on 27 Sep 2009.
Billy Elliot - The Musical now features David Alvarez, Tommy Batchelor, Trent Kowalik and *Kiril Kulish alternate the role of Billy, *Haydn Gwynne (Mrs. Wilkinson), Gregory Jbara (Dad), Carole Shelley (Grandma), Will Chase (Tony), Trevor Braun and Keean Johnson (alternating the role of Billy's friend Michael), Stephen Hanna (Billy's older self), Joel Hatch (George), Leah Hocking (Mum), Thommie Retter (Mr. Braithwaite) and Erin Whyland (Debbie).
* Alex Ko replaces Kiril Kulish from 5 Oct)
*Kate Hennig assumes the role of Mrs. Wilkinson from 6 Oct
Billy Elliot - The Musical opened at the Imperial Theatre on 13 Nov 2008, following previews from 1 Oct, where it is currently selling tickets through to 4 Apr 2010.
The show opened to excellent reviews: "everything about this production is remarkable."
(newyorktheatreguide.com); "enduring appeal" (NY Times); "irresistible new show " (NY Daily News); "head and toe-shoes above every other show this season" (NY Post); "as seriously thrilling as it is deeply lovable" (NewsDay); "Tough, intelligent, exuberant, electric, politically savvy, and fun" (Back Stage)
Set in England's North East against the background of the miners' strike - Billy Elliot is the tale of a motherless boy whose father wants him to take up boxing. Instead, the boy discovers a love for ballet that leads him from secret lessons to a place at the Royal Ballet School.
Billy Elliot is created by the same team that made the multi-Oscar-nominated film: writer Lee Hall, director Stephen Daldry, and choreographer Peter Darling. The musical's score is by Elton John, who also composed the music for 'The Lion King,' 'Aida' and 'Lestat.'
Billy Elliot - The Musical was a London hit when it opened at the Victoria Palace Theatre on 11 May 2005 and has been a box office hit ever since.
The London production won Three Olivier Awards: Best New Musical, Best Actor and Choreographer. It also won the Evening Standard Award for Best Musical. A production of the show opened in sydney in Dec 2007.
The Broadway production features the same creative team as the London production: Ian MacNeil (sets), Nicky Gillibrand (costumes), Rick Fisher (lighting) and Paul Arditti (sound).
The musical is produced on Broadway by Universal Pictures Stage Productions, Working Title Films and Old Vic Productions in association with Weinstein Live Entertainment.
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