Joaquin Valdes and More Filipino Actors Join “Death Note The Musical” in the West End

Filipinos are proving once again that their talents are world-class.

Joaquin Valdes took to the West End stage as Light Yagami in Death Note the Musical, an adaptation of the bestselling Japanese manga.

This is his latest role following performances in Killing the Cat and Heathers the Musical.

Valdes is joined by a group of fellow Filipinos in the cast.

He is joined by Christian Rey Marbella as Soichiro. Marbella has played the Thuy cover and Alternate Engineer in the West End revival of Miss Saigon. He has also been part of the cast of the musical several times, including the Manila production, three U.K. tours, an Asian tour, an international tour, and the Vienna production.

Part-Filipino actors are also part of the ensemble, including Janine Somcio, Deena Kapadia, and Charlotte Coggin.

Somcio was last seen in the Barbie adaptation, where she played Core Barbie, Delivery Barbie, and Pilot Barbie. Kapadia starred in Kipps – The New Half A Sixpence Musical earlier this year. Coggin, meanwhile, is part of the cast of Disenchanted and The Princess Switch 3.

From manga to the stage

Death Note follows Light, a genius high school student who finds a notebook called Death Note, which gives its users the ability to kill anyone whose name is written on its pages. The manga was written by Tsugumi Ohba and illustrated by Takeshi Obata from 2003 to 2006.

An anime adaptation was released in 2006, followed by a series of live-action films that started the same year. A slew of adaptations followed, including an American adaptation by Netflix released in 2017.

In 2015, Death Note was adapted to the stage in Japan and South Korea. The London production is the musical’s English language premiere.

The musical was staged at The London Palladium on August 21 and 22, 2023. It will have more performances at the Lyric Theatre from September 7 to 10, 2023.

The musical features music by Frank Wildhorn, lyrics by Jack Murphy, and a book by Ivan Menchell.

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