An original new musical following the late Princess Diana as she prepares to marry Prince Charles is headed to Broadway next year.
Diana bills itself as the story of the woman who “rocked the Royals” and “chose to be fearless, and as a result became timeless.” It premiered earlier this year at La Jolla Playhouse in San Diego, and will debut on Broadway on March 2, 2020. An opening date is set for March 31, at New York’s Longacre Theatre.
Set in 1981, the bio-musical follows Diana as she transitions into the royal family, during her marriage to Prince Charles, and through their eventual separation. It also explores her husband’s affair with Camilla, and delves into Diana’s relationship with the press.
According to People, Jeanna de Waal, who starred as Princess Diana in the show’s La Jolla Playhouse run, will reprise her role after its New York City transfer. “She made everyone feel special, from the highest person to the lowest ranking person, and I think we want to celebrate her,” de Waal said of Diana, according to BBC.
Roe Hartrampf will play Prince Charles, Erin Davie will assume the role of Camilla Parker Bowles (later Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall), and Judy Kaye takes on Queen Elizabeth.
According to Playbill, Diana comes from Joe DiPietro and David Bryan, the creative duo behind the Tony Award-winning musical Memphis. It features classical melodies and modern pop songs reminiscent of the 1980s.
“I was reading a book about her and I thought, ‘This is an amazing story about an amazing woman.’ She has this aspirational aspect to her where she really wanted to do good. I thought it was a great idea for a musical,” DiPietro said in an interview with London Theatre. “I asked around to see if anyone was doing it — no one was — so David and I just jumped into it.”
“It’s very much about marriage,” he continued, adding that, “the four main characters are [Diana], Charles, Camilla and the Queen.”