Lerner and Loewe’s first Eliza will recreate the original production, Cecil Beaton and all.

John Frost and Opera Australia have announced that Dame Julie Andrews will direct a 60th anniversary production of My Fair Lady in Sydney for an exclusive 2016 season. Dame Julie will be recreate the original production of Lerner and Loewe’s cherished masterpiece, complete with Cecil Beaton’s iconic costumes, alongside Tony award-winning choreographer Christopher Gatelli.

“I am thrilled to have been asked to direct My Fair Lady at the Sydney Opera House in August 2016,” said Andrews on her appointment. “I look forward to coming to Sydney this November to cast the production and begin the process of bringing this great musical to life once again.”

The choice of Dame Julie will mark her return to what is a long-standing relationship with the original Broadway production. In 1956, Andrews soared to international stardom when she played the irresistible Eliza Doolittle in Lerner and Loewe’s Broadway adaptation of George Bernard Shaw’s Pygmalion. It was only Andrews’ second Broadway show (she’d previously scored a hit in sandy Wilson’s The Boyfriend), but the show went on to run for six years and picked up six Tony Awards. “To think that Broadway’s original Eliza Doolittle, Julie Andrews, will direct our new production at the Sydney Opera House 60 years later, will, I’m sure, excite both Australian and international audiences,” said producer John Frost.

Featuring themes of class conflict and chauvinism alongside witty dialogue and a memorable score with such famous numbers as I Could Have Danced All Night, I’m Getting Married In The Morning, Wouldn’t It Be Loverly, On The Street Where You Live, The Rain In Spain and I’ve Grown Accustomed To Her Face, the musical has captured the hearts of millions worldwide. Its Cinderella storyline featuring a Cockney flower girl being groomed in elocution by an arrogant phoneticist, Professor Higgins dates back to the original Greek myth of Pygmalion, but it’s Shaw’s treatment that has lodged the story firmly in the minds of 20th-century audiences.

It was the NSW Government, through its tourism and major events agency, Destination NSW, who exclusively secured the Sydney premiere of this highly-applauded musical. “Sydney is Australia’s live performance capital and this landmark production of My Fair Lady is expected to bring more than 19,000 overnight visitors to the Harbour City, injecting an estimated $7 million into the NSW economy,” boasted Stuart Ayres, NSW Minister for Trade, Tourism and Major Events. “Presented by John Frost and Opera Australia, this is My Fair Lady for a new generation of audiences and it is sure to be a spectacular musical event for Sydney.”

My Fair Lady is scheduled to open at the Joan Sutherland Theatre, Sydney Opera House in August 2016. In order to secure priority tickets for this production, please join the waitlist at myfairladymusical.com.au

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