Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein’s The King and I is a stage musical
based on the 1944 novel Anna and the King of Siam by Margaret Landon. The
production premiered at Broadway’s St. James Theater. It was an immediate hit,
winning Tony Awards for Best Musical, Best Actress for Gertrude Lawrence and
Best Featured Actor for Yul Brynner. Lawrence died of cancer a year and a half
after the opening, and the role of Anna was played by other actresses during
the remainder of the Broadway run of over three years, 1,246 performances.