La Jolla Playhouse is pleased to announce the cast for its world-premiere production of Bhangin’ It: A Bangin’ New Musical, book by Mike Lew (Playhouse’s Tiger Style!) and Rehana Lew Mirza (Playhouse’s DNA Series’ Child of Colonialism), music and lyrics by Sam Willmott (Yo, Vikings!), with additional music by Grammy Award nominee Deep Singh. The piece will be directed by Stafford Arima (Broadway’s Allegiance), with choreography by Rujuta Vaidya (Slumdog Millionaire Academy Awards performance) and musical staging by Lisa Shriver (Playhouse/Broadway’s Jesus Christ Superstar), along with Bhangra specialist Anushka Pushpala (Artistic Director of Bhangra Empire). The show is scheduled to run in the Playhouse’s Mandell Weiss Theatre March 8 – April 17, 2022 (press opening March 20).
The cast features Ari Afsar as “Mary,” Aryaan Arora as “Mohan,” Bilaal Avaz as “Amit,” Jesse Bhamrah as “Gobind,” Brandon Contreras as “Billy,” Laura Dadap as “Constance,” Henry Walter Greenberg as “Noah,” Jason Heil as “Wallace,” Terrance Johnson as “Jake,” Jaya Joshi as “Sunita,” Madison McBride as “Lily,” Anu Mysore as “Shetal,” Amey Natu as “Big Bob,” Alka Nayyar as “Rekha,” Zain Patel as “Varun,” Devi Peot as “New Mary,” Vinithra Raj as “Preeti,” Ramita Ravi as “Shilpa,” along with Nikki Mirza, Gerry Tonella and Levin Valayil as swings.
“We are overjoyed to welcome this extraordinary cast to the Playhouse. They bring an incredible vitality to a show that is very much of our current cultural moment. Bhangin’ It: A Bangin’ New Musical is an utterly charming and vibrant new work about finding your identity and building community, and we can’t wait to share it with audiences this spring,” said Christopher Ashley, the Rich Family Artistic Director of La Jolla Playhouse.
Winner of the Richard Rodgers Award, Bhangin’ It: A Bangin’ New Musical is an exhilarating work that celebrates the traditions we inherit from yesterday and those we create for tomorrow. When a young woman finds her identity cannot be defined by checking a box, she sets off on a quest to dance to her own beat. Drawing from competitive Bhangra and mixing it with other Indian and Western dance forms alike, Bhangin’ It: A Bangin’ New Musical is an intoxicating, brash and joyous musical for America today.
La Jolla Playhouse is a place where artists and audiences come together to create what’s new and next in the American theatre, from Tony Award-winning productions, to imaginative programs for young audiences, to interactive experiences outside our theatre walls. Founded in 1947 by Gregory Peck, Dorothy McGuire and Mel Ferrer, the Playhouse is currently led by Tony Award winner Christopher Ashley, the Rich Family Artistic Director of La Jolla Playhouse, and Managing Director Debby Buchholz. The Playhouse is internationally renowned for the development of new plays and musicals, including mounting 105 world premieres, commissioning 60 new works, and sending 33 productions to Broadway – including the hit musical Come From Away – garnering a total of 38 Tony Awards, as well as the 1993 Tony Award for Outstanding Regional Theatre.