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Christian Borle will star in ‘Tammy Faye’ on Broadway

The new musical will open at the Palace Theatre in November.

Christian Borle (Credit: Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)

Two-time Tony Award winner Christian Borle has signed on to play Jim Bakker in the Broadway premiere of “Tammy Faye.” The previously announced musical, directed by Rupert Goold, will begin previews on Oct. 19 and open on Nov. 14 at the Palace Theatre. Borle will play opposite the previously announced Katie Brayben, who won an Olivier Award for her turn in the titular role in the musical’s West End bow. Borle replaces the previously announced Andrew Rannells, who has since vacated the production.

Borle won Tonys for his featured turns in 2012’s “Peter and the Starcatcher” and 2015’s “Something Rotten!” His additional Main Stem credits include “Legally Blonde,” “Falsettos” (opposite Rannells) and “Some Like It Hot,” all of which earned the actor additional Tony nominations. Off-Broadway, he appeared in the 2019 revival of “Little Shop of Horrors,” for which he won a 2020 Drama Desk Award. Borle’s television résumé includes roles on the NBC series “Smash” and the animated series “Hazbin Hotel.”

“Christian is one of Broadway’s most exciting leading men and I am beyond thrilled that he will be joining the company of ‘Tammy Faye,’” said the musical’s composer Elton John in a statement. “I know Christian will perfectly capture both the humor and the darkness written into the role and I, along with the rest of the creative team, cannot wait to see him and Katie bring this unforgettable couple to life this fall.”

In addition to John’s music, “Tammy Faye” features lyrics by Jake Shears, a book by James Graham and additional music by Tom Deering. “Tammy Faye” chronicles the real-life couple Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker, who, in the 1970s, brought their version of evangelistic Christianity to the homes of Americans through television. Tammy just wants to put the fun back in faith, however, she faces increasing pressure from a new wave of ministers to push religion into schools and the law.

Newly announced for the creative team is Luc Verschueren of Campbell Young Associates, who will design the production’s wig, hair and makeup.

Additional casting, by C12 Casting/Carrie Gardner and Jillian Cimini, will be announced.

“Tammy Faye” is being produced by Rocket Stage, Greene Light Stage and James L. Nederlander.