‘Phantom’ actress could be Ariel in Disney’s ‘The Little Mermaid’

When "The Little Mermaid," Disney's next big Broadway musical, tries out this summer in Denver, it is expected to star a hometown actress, according to The Denver Post newspaper.

Sierra Boggess has been offered the title role of Ariel, the newspaper reported Thursday, quoting the performer's father, Mike Boggess. He told the Post the offer was made Jan. 23, although a contract has not yet been signed.

"Casting is still in progress for the production," Disney spokesman Chris Boneau said Thursday. "We hope to be able to announce the cast in the next couple of weeks."

The 24-year-old Boggess, who has appeared in the touring company of "Les Miserables," currently is starring as Christine in the Las Vegas production of "The Phantom of the Opera."

Based on the hit Disney animated feature and Hans Christian Anderson tale about a young mermaid who yearns to live on land, "The Little Mermaid" will open Dec. 6 in New York at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre. Preview performances begin Nov. 3.