Whatever happens with the London weather this summer, you’ll only need to take a step inside our Royal Festival to be transported to sun-drenched Italy. Hit Broadway musical The Light In The Piazza, directed by the multiple Olivier Award winner Dan Evans comes to Southbank Centre for its London premiere from 14 June to 5 July.
This incredibly romantically scored love story follows Margaret Johnson and her daughter Clara as they explore the wonders of an ornate Italian city. As they walk a fateful gust of wind whisks Clara’s hat into the hands of local dreamer Fabrizio Naccarelli and it’s love at first sight. At least it would be, were things not a little more complicated than they seem.
Helping bring this six-time Tony Award-winning musical to life during its 20 performance run is a remarkably stellar cast including stars of stage and screen. Meet the principal actors.
Such are the huge and varied achievements of the much-acclaimed American soprano Renée Fleming that these few paragraphs barely scratch the surface of an impressive career which saw her awarded the US National Medal of Arts by President Barack Obama in 2013.
A star of opera houses around the world, her many awards include Germany’s Cross of the Order of Merit, France’s Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur, Sweden’s Polar Music prize and Honorary Membership of the Royal Academy of Music. A winner of four Grammy awards, she appears on the soundtracks of the oscar-winning The Shape of Water and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.
Such is the regard for Fleming’s talent she has been invited to perform at high-profile events including the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony, Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee Concert and The Superbowl. Shehas held the titles of Creative Consultant at the Lyric Opera of Chicago and Artistic Advisor to the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Fleming arrives in the UK off the back of a Tony Award nominated performance in the 2018 Broadway production of Carousel.
Actress and singer Dove Cameron may not be a familiar name to British theatre goers, but among Generation Z she boasts a worldwide social media following of millions. Hailing from Seattle, Cameron first came to national attention in the United States age 17 when she was cast in the dual lead role of the Disney Channel’s Liv and Maddie.
Hugely popular, the show ran for four seasons and 80 episodes, with Cameron in the starring role throughout. Since the conclusion of Liv and Maddie in 2017, Cameron has since appeared in NBC’s Hairspray Live!, The Lodge, and held a recurring role in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. as the character Ruby Hale.
Her performance on stage here at Royal Festival Hall as Clara Johnson, follows on from playing Sophie Sheridan in Mamma Mia! at Hollywood Bowl in 2017 and Cher Horowitz in an off-Broadway production of Clueless: The Musical.
The hugely experienced stage actor Alex Jennings, who has performed extensively with the National Theatre and the Royal Shakespeare company, joins The Light In The Piazza cast to take on the role of Signor Naccarelli.
A three-time Olivier Award winner, he is the only performer to have won the awards in the drama (Peer Gynt, Royal Shakespeare Company), comedy (Too Clever by Half, The Old Vic) and musical (My Fair Lady, Theatre Royal, Drury Lane) categories.
On screen Jennings may be familiar to audiences for his television roles as Reverend Hutton in Cranford, Alan Cowdrey, QC in Silk, King Leopold I in Victoria, and Prince Edward, Duke of Windsor in The Crown and Peter Bessell in A Very English Scandal. His film credits include playing Prince Charles in The Queen and Alan Bennett in The Lady In The Van.
Graduate of the Guildford School of Acting Rob Houchen came to prominence in London’s West End playing the role of Marius in Les Miserables, a role he reprised on the production’s 30th Anniversary Tour.
He followed this with the role of Fleet in Titanic at Charing Cross Theatre and has since played the lead role of Eugene in Eugenius!
Beyond the stage Houchen performs regularly as a singer and has released two albums featuring covers and his own material, beginning with the 2016 recording, RH. He is also one of three directors of the event company West End Does. He joins us at Royal Festival Hall to play the role of Fabrizio Naccarelli.