Chichester Festival Theatre’s hugely acclaimed new production of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s South Pacific will be streamed internationally on eight dates in August and September. Recorded live in front of an audience at CFT in July, the same performance will be broadcast on each of the stream dates.
Greeted by rave reactions from critics and audiences alike, the cast of Daniel Evans’ production is led by Gina Beck (Matilda, Show Boat, Wicked, Phantom of the Opera) as Nellie*, Julian Ovenden (Bridgerton, Downton Abbey, Merrily We Roll Along, Grand Hotel, BBC Proms) as Emile, Joanna Ampil (Cats, Les Misérables, Miss Saigon) as Bloody Mary, Keir Charles (Quiz, Back To Life) as Luther Billis and Rob Houchen (Les Misérables, The Light in the Piazza) as Cable.
This much-loved, Tony and Pulitzer Prize-winning musical opened in 1949 to huge success, becoming one of Broadway’s longest running hit shows. It boasts one of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s most memorable scores, featuring songs such as Some Enchanted Evening, I’m Gonna Wash That Man Right Outa My Hair and Bali Ha’i.
The cast also includes Iroy Abesamis, Lindsay Atherton, Carl Au, Rosanna Bates, David Birrell, Leslie Garcia Bowman, Taylor Bradshaw, Bobbie Chambers, Charlotte Coggin, Danny Collins, Oliver Edward, Sergio Giacomelli, Shailan Gohil, Adrian Grove, Zack Guest, Cameron Bernard Jones, Amanda Lindgren, Matthew Maddison, Sera Maehara (as Liat), Melissa Nettleford, Rachel Jayne Picar, Kate Playdon, Pierce Rogan, Clancy Ryan, Charlie Waddell and James Wilkinson-Jones, with children’s roles played by Archer Brandon, Ellie Chung, Lana Lakha, Kami Lieu, David Ngara-O’Dwyer and Alexander Quinlan.
On an archipelago in the South Pacific Ocean, US troops are kicking their heels amid the cacao groves while restlessly waiting for the war to reach them. Nellie Forbush, a navy nurse from Arkansas, finds herself falling for the French plantation owner, Emile de Becque – a man with a mysterious past. The scheming sailor Luther Billis runs a makeshift laundry to earn a quick buck, but he’s no match for the Polynesian Bloody Mary who’s intent on exploiting these foreigners. When young Princeton graduate Lieutenant Joe Cable is flown in on a dangerous reconnaissance mission, love and fear become entwined as the island’s battle for hearts and minds begins.
The run of live performances at Chichester continues until 5 September. Tickets for the live show and stream can be found here.
*Alex Young (Me and My Girl, Guys and Dolls, Follies) shares the role of Nellie with Gina Beck, who is pregnant, at certain performances from 5 August and full-time from 23 August. All streamed performances feature Gina Beck in the role.