Arts & Culture

Lea Salonga and More Join Cast of Broadway Revival of Once on This Island

Director Michael Arden is bringing life back to the musical by Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty.
IMAGE INSTAGRAM @msleasalonga
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Musical theater fans have something new to look forward to as a Broadway revival of the production Once On This Island makes it back onstage. Its producers have recently announced the cast to include Lea Salonga, Alex Newell of Glee fame, and Quentin Earl Darrington from Cats. This is Salonga’s return to the Broadway stage since playing the role of Kei Kimura in Allegiance. The production will run from December 3 at the Circle in the Square Theatre in New York City.

The story focuses on the lowly island girl Ti Moune and her ill-fated relationship with a wealthy island dweller in a place called the Jewel of Antilles where four fictional deities rule. Salonga plays the goddess of love Erzulie, while Merle Dandridge is Papa Ge, Darrington is Agwe, and Newell plays Asaka. Once On This Island was initially staged on Broadway in 1990 to 1991, and on West End in 1994.

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Salonga broke the news on her casting earlier today through a Facebook post. "I have been keeping this for months!" she shares, "So excited to be returning to Broadway this fall in one of my favorite shows!"

In making casting decisions, director Michael Arden says: "It became imperative for me to break expectations and stretch beyond the bounds in which Gods are traditionally represented." 

The actors will be joining the cast that already includes Tony nominee Phillip Boykin, Alysha Deslorieux, Kenita Miller, and Isaac Powell as Daniel, the man Ti Moune falls in love with. The actress taking the lead role of Ti Moune is yet to be announced.

h/t: Playbill

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Hannah Lazatin
Features Editor
Hannah is originally from Pampanga and from a big, close-knit family who likes to find a reason to get together at the dinner table. Experiences inspire her. “Once, at a restaurant, I received an interpretation of my second name ‘Celina,’ and it meant 'someone who tries everything once' and that is me through and through,” she says. As for the job, she wants her “readers to be inspired by the stories of the people we feature and to move them to reach for greater things.”
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