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The King and I

The 1956 film, The King and I, is one of the most successful musicals of all time. The fifth musical by the team of composer Richard Rodgers and dramatist Oscar Hammerstein II, The King and I is based on Margaret Landon’s 1944 novel Anna and the King of Siam. The story takes place in 1862 and follows an English widow named Anna Leonowens who, with her son Louis,  travels to Siam, now Thailand, to educate the King’s multiple wives and children as a live-in governess.

The King is determined to shift Siam into the modern world and thinks Western education can play a part in that but many of the traditions he values are quite alarming to Anna. As the film progresses, Anna becomes a successful teacher and tries to convince the King that slavery is unacceptable. Both Anna and the King teach each other understanding and love while continuing to keep many of their respective traditions and values.

The King and I tells one of the most unique love stories in cinema. It is a classic for the whole family. The arts have an incredible way of communicating cross-cultural and cross-generational subjects as well as connecting and bridging gaps between the young and the old.

Pictured below is the 131st manuscript of The King and I.

131st manuscript of The King and I
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