Aditya Chopra is adapting his much celebrated project Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge into a Musical Broadway titled Come Fall In Love. With this show, the YRF head honcho is trying to tell an important and relevant thing in today’s times. The show is about the celebration of inclusivity and diversity in a world that’s getting polarised and is about the celebration of love and how it can unify people and cultures and break down all barriers.
The makers of Come Fall in Love, which is premiering at the legendary Old Globe theatre on September 14, announced its cast last week. Aditya Chopra will be directing a cast of 30, which includes Shoba Narayan as Simran (Broadway’s Disney’s Aladdin as Princess Jasmine), Austin Colby as Rog Mandel (North American Tour of Disney’s Frozen the Musical as Hans, Off-Broadway’s Jersey Boys as Bob Gaudio), Irvine Iqbal as Baldev (West End’s Disney’s Aladdin as The Sultan), Rupal Pujara as Lajjo (Walnut Street Theatre’s In the Heights), Vishal Vaidya as Ajit (Encore’s Road Show), Siddharth Menon as Kuljt (India’s Disney’s Aladdin as Aladdin), ), Kate Loprest as Emily “Minky” Soulard (Broadway’s First Date, Hairspray), Juice Mackins as Ben (Broadway’s The Prom), Hannah Jewel Kohn as Cookie (North American Tour of Disney’s Frozen The Musical), Jeremy Kushnier as Roger Mandel, Sr. (Broadway’s Footloose as Ren McCormack, Rent as Roger Davis), Amita Batra as Ensemble (Amit Patel & Ishika Seth’s Unearthed: Untold Stories of the Ramayana), Neha Dharmapuram as Ensemble (M.S. in Marketing Intelligence from Fordham University), Tiffany Engen as Ensemble (Broadway’s Legally Blonde), Rohit Gijare as Ensemble (Bollywood Blvd at Lincoln Center), Marc A. Heitzman as Ensemble (Broadway’s Bandstand), Usman Ali Ishaq as Ensemble (Signature Theatre’s RENT), Nika Lindsay as Ensemble (North American Tour of Disney’s Frozen The Musical), Ilda Mason as Ensemble (West Side Story directed by Steven Spielberg), Caleb Mathura as Ensemble (Jesus Christ Superstar at Timber Lake Playhouse), Meher Mistry as Ensemble (India’s Disney’s Beauty and the Beast as Belle), Shannon Mullen as Ensemble (Broadway’s A Bronx Tale), Shahil Patel as Ensemble (Off-Broadway’s Fairycakes), Zain Patel as Ensemble (La Jolla Playhouse’s Bhangin’ It: A Bangin’ New Musical), Becca Petersen as Ensemble (Broadway’s Mean Girls), Kinshuk Sen as Ensemble (Much Ado About Nothing at UCLA’s Shakespeare Theater Company), Jack Sippel as Ensemble (Broadway’s The Prom), Michael Starr as Ensemble (First National Tour of Bright Star), Geatali Tampy as Ensemble (Bollywood Blvd at Lincoln Center), and Sonya Venugopal as Ensemble (Musical Theatreworks’ Evita.
Soon after this announcement, Michelin star and chef Vikas Khanna took to Twitter and expressed his displeasure on Austin Colby’s casting in the DDLJ Broadway, in the iconic role of Raj Malhotra, played by superstar Shah Rukh Khan in the film. He tweeted, “Raj is our childhood, youth, love & pride. Many Westerners will never understand what DDLJ means to us. I just saw HOUSEFULL show of @kiterunnerbway on BROADWAY w all colored cast. It received standing applause. Let’s not make our kids feel less on our own stage #DDLJMusical.”
Reacting to Vikas’s tweet today, music composer Vishal Dadlani took to Twitter and wrote, “Hi Vikas. Followed and appreciated your compassion during the Covid pandemic, so felt like I had to reply to you re: “Come Fall in Love – The DDLJ Musical”. Adi, Shekhar and I hope to represent India, our culture and our inclusive ethos with pride! CFIL has two cultures, meeting as equals, thru two young people in love. The cast is rich with South Asians playing South Asian characters and India is the most vibrant and glorious character on our stage! I promise you, we will do us all proud. I’d request you to come watch our show and see for yourself. Would be great to have you there!”
Come Fall In Love has many firsts for India and Indians. For the first time, an Indian director, Aditya Chopra, debuts on Broadway. It is also the first Bollywood musical to be on Broadway. It has Vishal and Sheykhar debuting too as composers. Shruti Merchant will do her first Broadway musical as Associate Choreographer. The show champions diversity and every department from cast to technicians is a beautiful confluence of East and West as Indians and South Asian representation is at the heart of this show.
For The Old Globe production, the musical begins performances September 1 and runs to October 16, 2022, with the official Opening on Wednesday, September 14. The limited engagement will play on the Donald and Darlene Shiley Stage in the Old Globe Theatre, part of the Conrad Prebys Theatre Center.