Rodgers and Hammerstein are busier in Connecticut now than they were 60 or 70 years ago, when their musicals routinely had out-of-town try-outs at the Shubert in New Haven. Tours of “Cinderella” and “The Sound of Music” have visited the state in recent months, and “Oklahoma” will be at the Goodspeed for much of the summer.
Now the national tour of “The King and I” comes to The Bushnell for eight performances May 30 through June 4. This is the tour of the Lincoln Center production directed by Bartlett Sher, who was associate artistic director of Hartford Stage in the 1990s and now is known for his socially relevant revivals of classic musicals.
Unlike many previous productions of this mid-19th century love story between the King of Siam and British schoolteacher Anna Leonwens, this one makes sure the Asian characters are cast with Asian actors. It stars Jose Llana and Laura Michelle Kelly in the title roles. Manna Nichols and Kavin Panmeechao play Tuptim and Lun Tha, who get to sing the haunting duet “I Have Dreamed.”
Shows are Tuesday through Thursday at 7:30 p.m., Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 2 and 8 p.m. and Sunday at 1 and 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $36.50 to $121.50. 860-987-5900, bushnell.org.
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