New musical Vanara – The Legend announces cast for world premiere production

Vanara cast updated

Casting has been confirmed for new musical Vanara – The Legend at London’s Hackney Empire.

The upcoming world premiere production will run between 22 and 31 October before a UK tour in 2022.


The cast will star Jacob Fowler, making his professional stage debut after appearing on Little Mix: The Search, Glenn Carter (Evita, Jesus Christ Superstar), Johnnie Fiori (The Sunshine Boys), Carole Stennett (Death of a Salesman, The Bodyguard), Cavin Cornwall (Jesus Christ Superstar) and Emily Bautista (Les Misérables, Miss Saigon) who will be making her London debut.

Further cast bringing Vanara – The Legend to life include Samantha Mercer (Les Misérables, Jerry Springer the Opera), Kayleigh McKnight (Tina The Musical, Jesus Christ Superstar), Joaquin Pedro Valdes (Heathers, Miss Saigon) and Shem Omari James (The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber).

The production will also feature an incredible ensemble with Jemima Brown, Chris George, Yuki Abe, Olivia Jones, Ella Martine, Hicaro Nicolai, Prem Rai and Ebby Sama.

Highly anticipated following its lauded workshop performances and concept album, the ground breaking production will be directed by Adam Lenson and Eleesha Drennan, who will also serve as Dramaturg and Choreographer respectively. Vanara – The Legend brings together an acclaimed international creative team, with a soaring score by Gianluca Cucchiara, lyrics by Andrew James Whelan, book by Michael Conley, conceived by Tony Cucchiara and produced and developed by Giovanna Romagnoli.

Further creatives include set and costume design by Libby Todd, with orchestrations by Jen Green, musical direction by Tamara Saringer and casting by Harry Blumenau.

With a prevailing message of hope and call for unity, the production resonates with the chaos of today’s society and the earth ravaged by natural disasters. This fiery phenomenon has gained cult status among fans throughout its development process. With its blend of theatre, contemporary dance, and technical innovation, Vanara – The Legend is crafting a new language for musical theatre. It is an excitingly modern musical like nothing before.

As disaster threatens to destroy the world they know, two tribes are locked in an age-old battle. One young woman must make a choice: protect the traditions of her people or challenge everything she has been taught. With total devastation bearing down on them, will the two tribes reunite before it’s too late?

Tickets are on sale online now via the Hackney Empire website.

Producer Giovanna Romagnoli commented: “We’re thrilled to bring together this incredible ensemble to premiere Vanara – The Legend in London. We can’t wait for audiences to witness the fantastic spectacle on stage, showcasing the talents of both the cast and creative team.”

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