New Dulhania: Shoba Narayan to Play Lead Role With Austin Colby in Broadway Adaptation of ‘DDLJ’
- Scheduled to open at The Old Globe in San Diego, California, in September, the production will be helmed by Aditya Chopra, who directed the original film in 1995 that launched the careers of Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol.
Shoba Narayan and Austin Colby will play the lead roles in “Come Fall in Love — The DDLJ Musical,” the Broadway adaptation of the Bollywood cult film that launched the careers of Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol. Scheduled to open at The Old Globe in San Diego, California, in September, the production will be helmed by Aditya Chopra, who directed the original film.
Narayan will play Simran, a young Indian-American woman who spends a summer in Europe before she has to go to India for her arranged marriage to a family friend. While there, she meets Rog (Colby), an American man, and the two fall in love, leaving Simran to navigate her heart, future, and identity, according to the synopsis provided by PlayBill.
Joining the lead actors are Irvine Iqbal and Baldev, Rupal Pujara as Lajjo, Vishal Vaidya as Ajit, Siddharth Menon as Kuljt, Kate Loprest as Emily “Minky” Soulard, Juice Mackins as Ben, Hannah Jewel Kohn as Cookie, and Jeremy Kushnier as Roger Mandel, Sr.
The Broadway production will include a book and lyrics by Nell Benjamin, and choreography by Tony and Emmy winner Rob Ashford and associate choreographer Shruti Merchant. The set design will be by Emmy and Tony Award winner Derek McLane of “Moulin Rouge!” Fame. Vishal Dadlani and Shekhar Ravjiani will serve as composers, while the music supervision is from Bill Sherman (“In The Heights,” “Hamilton”). Adam Zotovich serves as executive producer.
Chopra made his film directing debut with Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, which premiered in 1995 and continues to run in cinemas throughout India and places home to members of the Indian diaspora. The film is the longest-running movie in Indian cinema history.
In a note posted on the Yash Raj Film website, Chopra shared the process that led to the musical. He wrote how in the summer of 1985, as a 14-year-old on a holiday in London, his first musical theater experience blew his mind. “But that day what I saw, I couldn’t believe that this kind of spectacle could be created live on stage,” he wrote. “But the most significant aspect that resonated with me was how similar musical theatre was to our Indian films,” he added. “I realized then, that worlds apart, languages apart, western musical theatre and Indian films are two long lost lovers separated in time.”
He continues: “26 years later I’m going back to my original vision of the story of DDLJ, a love story of an American boy and an Indian girl, a love story of two cultures… two worlds.” Admitting that he’s “terribly nervous and incredibly excited,” as he’s “a hardcore cinema guy,” who’s never done theater before. “But what is giving me confidence is the fantastic team that I have. Each one of them are masters of their field and their brilliance and expertise is going to make this a fantastic show.”