Two-time Disney Princess heads to Brighton

Musical theatre royalty – and two-time Disney Princess – Lea Salonga is coming to Brighton with her brand-new tour Dream Again.

Lea Salonga
Lea Salonga

She plays Brighton Dome on Sunday, June 26.

Lea claimed her theatrical crown aged just 18 when she created the role of Kim in the epic musical Miss Saigon in the West End and subsequently on Broadway.

She then went on to be the first actress of Asian descent to play both Eponine and Fantine in Les Misérables on Broadway.

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    Now comes The Dream Again tour celebrating the 30th anniversary of Lea recording the Disney love song A Whole New World as Princess Jasmine in Aladdin in 1992.

    Younger fans will also recognise Lea’s tones as the singing voice of Fa Mulan in Mulan and Mulan II, the three films earning her the official title of Disney Legend.

    “The UK has been very important for my career and most certainly to get a taste of Britain,” Lea says. “The first time I did anything in the UK, I was 18.

    "I was in my first year at uni when I auditioned for Miss Saigon and didn't really go back after that! People go to college to do what I was then doing and really it just doesn't get better than to be doing something at the Theatre Royal in Drury Lane.

    “It was a big responsibility. Getting to create a part, getting to be in the West End, being someone who came from the Philippines and given all the publicity... it felt like there was a lot of pressure on an 18-year-old. I found like the weight of 70 million people on my shoulders.

    " I just had to focus on the show, to keep my focus on... well, not on the small things because it wasn't a small show… but I just had to limit the way I was thinking. But it was fantastic.

    “I was still in Miss Saigon over here in New York when the audition for Aladdin came up. The casting director left a note at the stage door and said ‘We're looking for you, please can you get in touch with me?’ I still had to audition and I had to compete against other people for it but it was a great experience

    “And the song still feels so new. The song has not lost its magic. At the time it was like this is a Disney song much like the ones in the story books that I knew as a child and I am going to be doing this.

    "It's something classic and it is great to have been part of it, to do something that is really multi-generational. It was instantly timeless. It is a gift.

    "That's how I see it. It just feels like it was wonderful opportunity but I think above all it just feels like a gift.”

    Joining Lea for the first time on stage in the UK will be her brother, conductor and orchestrator Gerard Salonga as musical director. Gerard is the resident conductor of the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra and a former assistant conductor of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra.