The Lisa Smith Wengler Center for the Arts presents Lea Salonga
Tony Award-winning Lea Salonga brings her powerful voice to Pepperdine University's Smothers Theatre at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, April 18.
As part of her residency at Pepperdine University, Lea Salonga will also teach a master class with Pepperdine musical theatre students.
Praised around the world for her powerful voice and perfect pitch, Lea Salonga is a singer and actress who is best known for her Tony Award-winning role in Miss Saigon. Also an Olivier, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle, and Theatre World Award winner, she was the first actress of Asian decent to play Eponine in the musical Les Misérables on Broadway and returned to the beloved show as Fantine in the 2006 revival.
Most Recently, Lea starred in the Broadway musical, Allegiance, alongside legendary actor George Takei and Telly Leung. Allegiance tells the story of a Japanese-American family forced into an internment camp during World War II. The production was brought to Broadway following a successful run at The Old Globe Theater in San Diego, and Lea garnered a Craig Noel nomination for Outstanding Featured Performance in a Musical for her work.
Lea is also well-known as the singing voice of Princess Jasmine from Disney's Aladdin and Fa Mulan for Mulan and Mulan II. For her portrayal of the beloved princesses, the Walt Disney Company bestowed her with the honor of "Disney Legend" in August of 2011 along such luminaries as Regis Philbin, Jim Henson (posthumously), and Anika Noni Rose.
In 2010, she participated in the 25th Anniversary Concert of Les Misérables to sold out crowds at the UK's O2 arena. She also dazzled as the hauntingly tragic Grizabella in a limited run of CATS in her hometown of Manila, where she has also appeared in God of Carnage.
Lea has toured the world performing in sold out concerts in such locations as the Disney Concert Hall, Singapore's Esplanade, Kuala Lumpur Convention Center, Hong Kong Cultural Center, Bangkok Convention Center, Carnegie Hall, and numerous venues in her hometown of Manila, and in cities such as Vancouver, Sacramento, San Diego, Phoenix, Indianapolis, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Ottawa, and San Francisco. She was also the first artist to sell out two shows at BYU's de Jong Concert Hall since The Kings Singers in 2009.
When not on tour, Lea is a coach on the Philippine version of the hit "The Voice."
Lea began her career as a child star in the Philippines, making her professional debut in 1978 at the age of seven in the musical The King and I. She went on to star in productions of Annie, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Fiddler on the Roof, The Rose Tattoo, The Sound of Music, The Goodbye Girl, Paper Moon, and The Fantasticks.