Irish musical theatre superstars lead the cast for 9/11 based musical

Rachel Tucker and David Shannon will star in the West End production of Broadway musical Come from Away when it premieres in December at the Abbey Theatre.

The musical, which won a Tony award for best direction in 2017, tells the true story of 7,000 air passengers stranded in Newfoundland, Canada during the wake of 9/11.

For those of you not in the know, Belfast-born Tucker is a West End and Broadway superstar, best known for her portrayal of Elphaba in the hit musical Wicked and Dublin native, Shannon has played both Jean Valjean, in Les Miserables and the Phantom in Phantom of the Opera.

Other members of the cast include Jenna Boyd, Nathanael Campbell, Clive Carter, Mary Doherty, Robert Hands, Helen Hobson, Jonathan Andrew Hume, Harry Morrison, Emma Salvo and Cat Simmons.

Here’s a sneak peek of what you can expect Tucker's role as Bevelery Bass, American Airlines' first female captain.

Speaking about the announcement Neil Murray, Director of the Abbey Theatre, said: “Come From Away has captured the hearts and imaginations of everyone that has been part of its journey, so far. We are delighted to be involved in bringing this beautiful, humane, uplifting story to Ireland this winter, for its European premiere.

It’s a show with an incredibly generous spirit that, we think, will resonate deeply with Irish audiences, and we can’t wait to see what this wonderfully talented UK/Irish ensemble will bring to the story

Earning widespread critical and audience acclaim, the multi-award-winning musical continues sold-out, record-breaking engagements on Broadway, and in Canada, with a 60-city North American Tour recently launched in Seattle, an Australian production confirmed for summer 2019, and a feature film adaptation in the works.

As many Newfoundlanders are of Irish descent, our accents are frequently said to be freakishly similar and with the opening scene of the musical narrated with a "throbbing pulse of the Bodhran", it looks like the musical's score reflects that fact too.

The long-awaited West End premiere is set for February 19 but before it takes residence at The Phoenix Theatre, London it will briefly debut in The Abbey Theatre for a 6-week run, from December 6 to January 19.

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