Interview with Allegiance’s Telly Leung

Posted on 21 December 2022

You may know George Takei from his iconic portrayal of Hikaru Sulu in the television series Startrek, however, the road to success was never easy. Takei’s journey from a victim of war-torn oppression to a public hero is as impressive as his decades-long career. Flashback to over six decades ago, Takei and his family are ripped from their native California, forced to abandon their life and separated from the outside world by barbed-wire fencing and swamplands. Their new residence is called an internment camp, its living conditions are cruel, and it aims to stamp down the human spirit. Allegiance is the ground-breaking true-to-life story of Takei’s fight for freedom against war and discrimination. After transferring from a critically-acclaimed Broadway run, Allegiance is now playing at London’s Charing Cross Theatre.

As part of our festive celebrations here at London Theatre Direct, we interviewed Telly Leung, who plays Young Sammy Kimura in Allegiance, here’s what he had to say!

Interview with Telly Leung 

1. How do you get yourself ready to step on stage? Do you have any pre-show rituals?

I love a herbal peppermint tea with honey and a proper vocal warm-up, especially for Allegiance - which is a big emotional sing. I also like to do a mini-Tabata workout to get the blood going and get loose.

2. What do you think is an underappreciated line/moment/scene/character (hidden gem) in the show?

I love the score by Jay Kuo, but I want to give a special shout-out to our Broadway orchestrator & music supervisor, Lynne Shankel who collaborated closely with Jay to create the sound of Allegiance.

3. What's your favourite Christmas song?

“All I Want For Christmas Is You”. All day. Everyday. I secretly listen to it all year round.

4. How would you spend a spectacular snow day?

During the run of Allegiance on Broadway in 2015, we actually had a “snow day”! Before the pandemic, snow days and cancellations were a rare occurrence on Broadway. I’d probably spend it at home, snuggled on the couch, and catching up on all my shows (and on vocal rest!).

Allegiance tickets are available now! 

Through this exploration into a painful slice of history, Allegiance shows the difficulty of moving on and the undeniable force of love and forgiveness. Want to see it for yourself?


Kevin Thomas

By Kevin Thomas

From as early as I can recall, writing has always been my passion. Being able to combine this with my love for theatre has been a rewarding and exhilarating experience. I truly believe that there is magic in seeing a story brought to life on stage, and this is what I would like to promote to audiences.