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Farinelli and the King Recoups as It Exits Broadway

Mark Rylance starred as King Philippe V in the historical play by Claire van Kampen.

Huss Garbiya, Mark Rylance, and Melody Grove in a scene from Farinelli and the King at Broadway's Belasco Theatre.
(© Joan Marcus)

Producers Sonia Friedman, Shakespeare's Globe, and Paula Marie Black have announced that Farinelli and the King, which played its final performance on Sunday, March 25, recouped the capitalization costs for its Broadway run.

Farinelli and the King is a new play written by Claire van Kampen, directed by John Dove, and designed by Jonathan Fensom, with musical arrangements also by Claire van Kampen. The West End import played a limited engagement from December 5, 2017-March 25 at the Belasco Theatre, where it opened on December 17.

Three-time Tony Award winner and Academy Award winner Mark Rylance led the production as King Philippe V of Spain. Plagued by insomnia, he lies awake in his chamber. The queen, desperate for a cure, hears of Farinelli — a castrato with a voice so divine it has the power to captivate all who hear it. Philippe is astonished when Farinelli sings, and begs him to stay. But will Farinelli, one of the greatest celebrities of his time, choose a life of solitude over fame and fortune in the opera houses of Europe?

The cast additionally featured Sam Crane (Farinelli), Huss Garbiya (Doctor José Cervi), Melody Grove (Isabella Farnese), Lucas Hall (Jethro/Miguel, cover Farinelli), Simon Jones (John Rich), and Edward Peel (De La Cuadra). Grammy Award-winning countertenor Iestyn Davies made his Broadway debut singing the role of Farinelli, alternating with James Hall and Eric Jurenas. The company also included Peter Bradbury and Margot White.

"We've packed up our candles, but we are so pleased that Broadway was so welcoming to the rarefied world of Farinelli and the King," the producers commented. "We're grateful to the wonderful crew at the Belasco Theatre, and to this company, led by the extraordinary Mark Rylance, for bringing Claire van Kampen's beautiful play about the healing power of music to such extraordinary life."