Betty Buckley
Betty Buckley
(© Myriam Santos)
Tony Award-winning actress Betty Buckley (Cats) will lead the British premiere of Jerry Herman's musical Dear World, which begins its run at the Charing Cross Theatre in London on February 4. The production will be directed and choreographed by two-time Tony Award winner Gillian Lynne (Cats, Phantom of the Opera).

The musical, based on Jean Giraudoux's The Madwoman of Chaillot, follows the Countess Aurelia (Buckley) as she leads a resistance to stop businessmen from drilling for oil in her neighborhood in Paris. The revival features the original book by writing duo Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee (Mame), and the original music and lyrics by Tony Award-winning composer Jerry Herman. The original production, which starred Angela Lansbury, opened on Broadway in 1969.

The new production's creative team includes Matt Kinley (production design), Ann Hould-Ward (costume design), Mike Robertson (lighting design), Ian Townsend (musical direction) and Sarah Travis (Orchestrations).

Jerry Herman was the composer and lyricist for several beloved musicals, including Hello Dolly, Mame, La Cage Aux Folles, Mack and Mabel, and Milk and Honey. He received a Lifetime Achievement Tony Award in 2009.

Betty Buckley made her Broadway debut in the musical 1776, originating the role of Martha Jefferson. She went on to win a Tony Award for her portrayal of Grizabella in Cats. Her subsequent stage credits include Pippin and Sunset Boulevard.