Ryan Kopel and More Will Lead New Production of DEAR EVAN HANSEN at Nottingham Playhouse

Performances begin on 9 September.

By: Jun. 11, 2024
Ryan Kopel and More Will Lead New Production of DEAR EVAN HANSEN at Nottingham Playhouse
Enter Your Email to Unlock This Article

Plus, get the best of BroadwayWorld delivered to your inbox, and unlimited access to our editorial content across the globe.

Existing user? Just click login.

Nottingham Playhouse has announced the full cast for the brand-new production of the Olivier, Tony and Grammy award-winning Best Musical DEAR EVAN HANSEN.

Ryan Kopel (Newsies) will play the iconic role of Evan Hansen, alongside Lauren Conroy (Into The Woods) as Zoe Murphy and Alice Fearn (Wicked, Come From Away) as Evan’s mum, Heidi.

 They will be joined by Helen Anker (Mamma Mia!) as Cynthia Murphy, Richard Hurst (The Lion King) as Larry Murphy, Killian Thomas Lefevre (Bat Out Of Hell) as Connor Murphy, Tom Dickerson (Heathers) as Jared Kleinman, Vivian Panka (9 to 5 the Musical) as Alana Beck and Sonny Monaghan (discovered via TikTok) as alternate Evan. 

This is the first production of Dear Evan Hansen in the UK to perform the show with an ensemble. The ensemble are Lara Beth-Sas, Will Forgrave, Daniel Forrester, Jessica Lim, Sonny Monaghan and Shakira Simpson.

The casting team collaborated with TikTok during the audition process, inviting TikTok users who were interested in being cast in the production to upload a video of themselves singing any number from the show. The team then reviewed all submissions and invited those they felt could be a part of the cast to participate in the formal audition process. Over 2000 videos were submitted and of those, 36 TikTok users were invited to in-person auditions. Sonny Monaghan was cast in the ensemble, and as alternate Evan (performing the role twice a week, at every matinee performance), as a result of the TikTok collaboration.

Director Adam Penford said “I am beyond thrilled with the talented cast we have assembled. An exciting mix of musical theatre legends and rising stars. It's been nine years since the original show premiered, and it's an honour to be the first production to reimagine this powerful story through a contemporary lens.”

The production is also delighted to announce its partnership with The Mix, the UK’s leading digital charity for under 25-year-olds.  The show deals with sensitive topics, very relevant to young people today, and this partnership will ensure that anyone affected by the issues explored in the show knows where to find support. 

The Mix will provide training to the cast and creative team on how to appropriately respond to queries from the public, both online and offline, and equip them with the knowledge to direct individuals to the right support channels. The partnership also aims to create engaging and informative content to help elevate and empower young people at a time when they need it most. This will include resources and tips on essential life skills for transitioning into adulthood.

Directed by Nottingham Playhouse’s Artistic Director Adam Penford, DEAR EVAN HANSEN will open at the Nottingham Playhouse on 9 September 2024, following which a major UK tour will commence with the same cast. Tour schedule below.

Morgan Large is Set and Costume Designer (Newsies, Sister Act), with Carrie-Anne Ingrouille as Choreographer (Six, Zoo Nation), Matt Daw as Lighting Designer (Pet Shop Boys, Lorde), Tom Marshall as Sound Designer (West Side Story, Sister Act), Ravi Deepres as Video Designer (School for Scandal, Woolf Works), Matt Smith as Musical Supervisor (Dear Evan Hansen, My Neighbour Totoro) and Natalie Gallacher CDG for Pippa Ailion & Natalie Gallacher Casting as casting director (Mean Girls, MJ The Musical, Moulin Rouge), Michelle Payne as Associate Director and Laura Llewellyn-Jones as Orchestral Manager.

Packed with some of the biggest musical theatre songs of the last decade, DEAR EVAN HANSEN has a score by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (Oscar-winning composers forThe Greatest Showman and La La Land) and a book by Steven Levenson. Its many awards include the Tony® Award for Best Musical, Olivier Award for Best New Musical and the Grammy® Award for Best Musical Theatre Album.

Today is going to be a good day. And here’s why…

Meet Evan: an anxious high school kid who wants nothing more than to fit in. The thing is, on his way to fitting in, he didn’t tell the whole truth. And now must give up on a life he never dreamt he’d have. As events spiral and the truth comes out, Evan faces a reckoning with himself and everyone around him.

DEAR EVAN HANSEN is presented by arrangement with Music Theatre International.


Ryan Kopel’s theatre credits include Newsies at Troubadour Wembley Park Theatre, West End productions of The Book Of Mormon at the Prince of Wales Theatre and The Inheritance at the Noël Coward Theatre, and West Side Story at the Edinburgh International Festival. He has also performed in The Addams Family concert at the London Palladium and the Billie the Kid concert at the Vaudeville Theatre. His television credits include HBO series House of the Dragon and Wedding Season.

Lauren Conroy’s theatre credits include Babies at the Lyric Theatre and The Other Palace, Bear Snores On at the Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre, The Sound of Music at the Chichester Festival Theatre and Into The Woods at Bath Theatre Royal. On television, Lauren has appeared in Apple TV’s The Buccaneers, ITV’s The Confessions of Frannie Langton and the BBC’s Shetland.

Alice Fearn’s theatre credits include West End productions of Come From Away at The Phoenix Theatre, Wicked at the Apollo Victoria Theatre, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels at the Savoy Theatre, Les Misérables at the Queen’s Theatre, Woman In White at the Palace Theatre and Shrek The Musical at Theatre Royal Drury Lane. She has also appeared in Into The Woods at the Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre, Annie Get Your Gun at the Young Vic, Then, Now & Next at the Southwark Playhouse and Oliver! at The Watermill Theatre, Her film credits include Les Misérables, Sweeney Todd, Alice In Wonderland, Clash Of The Titans, Mamma Mia! and Pirates of the Caribbean. 

Helen Anker has performed in many West End and Broadway productions, including Promises Promises at the Broadway Theatre, Parade at The Donmar Warehouse, Oklahoma! At The National Theatre and Lyceum Theatre, Always at the Victoria Palace Theatre, Cats at the New London Theatre, Fame at the Cambridge Theatre and Crazy for You at the Prince Edward Theatre. Her other theatre credits include the UK and International Tour of Mamma Mia!, Candide and On the Town, both at English National Opera. Her film credits include Ted 2, Cinderella and Oklahoma! — The Movie, and television credits include Law and Order, The Good Wife and White Collar.

Richard Hurst’s theatre credits include The Duchess of Malfi and The Fantastic Follies of Mrs Rich at the RSC, Jane Eyre at The National Theatre, My Night With Reg at the Apollo Theatre and Donmar Warehouse, A Chorus of Disapproval, Worst Wedding Ever and Dick Whittington and his Cat, all at the Salisbury Playhouse, and the UK & International Tour of The Lion King. His television credits include EastEnders, Doctors, Casualty, Look and The Sitcom Trials.

Killian Thomas Lefevre’s theatre credits include West End productions of The Strange Affair of Herschel Grynszpan at The Other Palace and Stick Man at Leicester Square Theatre, as well as Secret Cinema’s Stranger Things in London, the UK and International Tour of Bat Out of Hell, and The Real and Imagined History of the Elephant Man at Nottingham Playhouse.

Tom Dickerson’s theatre credits include the UK & Ireland Tour of Heathers, the International Tour of The Book of Mormon, Hansel & Gretel at the Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre, Alice at the Dubai QE2, But I’m A Cheerleader at MT Fest and The Other Palace, and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, both at the Isle of Man Gaiety Theatre.

Vivian Panka’s theatre credits include Heathers the Musical at The Other Palace and the UK Tour of 9 to 5 The Musical. She also appeared in the film of Heathers: The Musical.

Sonny Monaghan’s theatre credits include Turn the Page at The Stables, Carmen at White Rock and TAG Live at COVE Resorts.

Lara Beth-Sas’s theatre credits include Jack and the Beanstalk at The Kenton Theatre, Treasure Island at the Hazlitt Theatre, the UK & Ireland Tour of Friends The Musical Parody, A Christmas Carol and Cinderella at the Groundlings Theatre, and Two and a Half Showbiz Girls at the Doncaster Little Theatre.

Will Forgrave’s theatre credits include the UK Tour of The Sound of Music, The Go-Between at the Apollo Theatre, The Braille Legacy at Charing Cross Theatre, Oliver at the Manchester Palace and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang at the Liverpool Empire.

Daniel Forrester’s theatre credits include West End productions Opening Night at the Gielgud Theatre and Ain't Too Proud: The Life and Times of The Temptations at the Prince Edward Theatre, as well as Summer! The Donna Summer Musical at Norwegian Cruise Lines.

Jessica Lim’s theatre credits include the UK Tour of Shrek The Musical, Dark Lord at MT Fest and The Other Palace, Claus The Musical at The Lowry, Zorro The Musical at Charing Cross Theatre, The Musical That Goes Right at The Cockpit and Mario: A Super Musical! at The Union Theatre.

Shakira Simpson’s theatre credits include West End productions of Hairspray at the London Coliseum, The Lion King at the Lyceum Theatre and Billy Elliott at the Victoria Palace Theatre, as well as the UK & Ireland tour of Six The Musical, Legally Blonde at the Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre, and the UK tour of Fantastically Great Women Who Changed the World.



To post a comment, you must register and login.