Adrian Dunbar & Stephanie J. Block To Star In 'Kiss Me Kate' Revival At Barbican

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Line of Duty's Adrian Dunbar is to star in a new production of Cole Porter's classic musical Kiss Me, Kate alongside Tony Award winner Stephanie J. Block who is to make her West End debut in the production which will open at the Barbican on June 4th.

Block, who is perhaps best known for her work on Broadway will play Lilli Vanessi/Katharine with Dunbar making his musical theatre debut in the role of Fred Graham/Petruchio. The production will be directed by Bartlett Sher, whose new West End production of The King and I will open in the West End later this month at the Dominion Theatre. Anthony Van Laast choreographs the musical.

This production will feature over 50 members in the company, including a full-scale orchestra, and includes classic songs including "Brush Up Your Shakespeare," "Another Op’nin’, Another Show," and "Tom, Dick or Harry."

Speaking about the appointment, Adrian Dunbar commented: “I’m so delighted to be returning to the stage this summer to my spiritual home at the Barbican - where I started my career at The Guildhall School of Music and Drama - especially in this Cole Porter classic with the wonderful creative team including Bart Sher and Stephanie J. Block. Summer 2024 just got a lot brighter!”

Block also commented about the forthcoming show stating: "Look... when asked to bring a Cole Porter classic to the Barbican stage under the care and vision of Bart Sher, one must say yes! There are so many 'firsts' to this opportunity, and at this stage of my career, 'firsts' are not the norm. How wonderfully scary and challenging and thrilling. I cannot wait to dive into this timeless classic and put a fresh stamp on it alongside the incredible Adrian Dunbar. Mark my words, this Kiss Me, Kate will most definitely not be just 'another openin,' another show."

Kiss Me, Kate is a show within a show, that follows a theatre company in its attempt to stage a production of William Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew. A battle of the sexes takes centre stage with bickering former spouses finding that their off-stage antics rival the drama happening on stage. Audiences can expect cases of mistaken identity, gangsters, confused love, and spectacular tap dance routines.

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