The Broadway production of Pretty Woman, the musical based on the hit romantic comedy film of the same name, has found its new leads. Producer Paula Wagner announced today that Jillian Mueller will succeed Samantha Barks in the role of “Vivian” and Brennin Hunt will assume the role of “Edward,” currently played by Andy Karl. The duo will enter the musical housed at Broadway’s Nederlander Theatre on Monday, July 22. They will join current cast members Orfeh, Eric Anderson, Charlie Pollock, and Kingsley Leggs. Barks and Karl will play their final performances on Sunday, July 21.
Mueller was an original cast member of Pretty Woman, having also appeared on Broadway in Bye Bye Birdie and How the Grinch Stole Christmas. Her work on national tours include Dirty Dancing as ‘Baby’ and Flashdance as ‘Alex Owens,’ in addition to the national tours of American Idiot and Memphis. Singer-songwriter Hunt, who was a contestant on The X Factor, rose to national attention playing “Roger” in the Fox telecast of Rent: Live! He will be making his Broadway debut in Pretty Woman.
“To launch our second year of Pretty Woman on Broadway we searched from New York to Hollywood to find a new ‘Vivian’ and we saw many talented young women,” said producer Paula Wagner, “Jillian is exactly what we were looking for – A new star with raw talent, vulnerability, an inner spark, star quality and a gorgeous voice that can belt out Bryan and Jim’s score eight times a week. What makes this discovery even more exciting is that she was already part of the Pretty Woman family having been a member of our original Broadway cast – she was literally waiting in the wings.”
“The world watched Brennin put his mark on the role of Roger on Rent Live!, winning over viewers with his amazing voice, and what’s more impressive, he did it in a foot cast, which of course reminded me of my great friend, and our current ‘Edward’, Andy Karl.” Said director/choreographer Jerry Mitchell. “Brennin made people swoon with that brilliant performance, and he shot to the top of my list for a man to take over the role of ‘Edward.’ We are thrilled to welcome Brennin to Broadway.”
Pretty Woman, now in its eleventh month on Broadway, features a score by pop music icon Bryan Adams and Jim Vallance, with a book by the late Garry Marshall and screenwriter J.F. Lawton. Tony Award-winning director and choreographer Jerry Mitchell helmed the production. The musical opened officially on August 16, 2018.
Mark Robinson is the author of the two-volume encyclopedia The World of Musicals, The Disney Song Encyclopedia, and The Encyclopedia of Television Theme Songs. He maintains a theater and entertainment blog at markrobinsonwrites.com.