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Summer in NYC: Broadway in Bryant Park & More

Jerrica White

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There’s nothing like summer in the city!

The sun is finally out. Our Broadway Black favorites are now Tony winners. Audra is still liking our tweets. Motown is coming back to Broadway. All is well in the world.

What could possibly be the cherry on top of our ice cream? Show tunes in the park. FOR FREE.

Here are a couple of ways you can see some of the hottest Broadway Black stars performing outside of the theatre.

Broadway in Bryant Park
The Color Purple, Waitress, Kinky Boots, and more headline 106.7 LITE FM’S Broadway in Bryant Park.

Grab your lunch, lawn chair, and blanket, and head to 6th Avenue between 40th and 42nd Streets for weekly lunchtime summer series. Performances are on Thursdays 12:30-1:30p, beginning July 7 and will run through August 11th.

Broadway in Bryant Park is presented by New York-Presbyterian for Kids and the TKTS Discount Ticketing Booth. Seating is first come, first serve.

Check out the full list of performances below:

July 7
Wicked
Stomp
The Color Purple
Matilda

July 14
Chicago
The Fantasticks
Motown
Finding Neverland

July 21
Fiddler On The Roof
Les Misérables
Fuerza Bruta
The Marvelous Wonderettes

July 28
Waitress
Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812
Kinky Boots
Fun Home
Himself & Nora

August 4
Beautiful
An American In Paris
Avenue Q
Holiday Inn

August 11
Phantom Of The Opera
Something Rotten
Cagney
Ruthless

Classical Theatre of Harlem: Macbeth

Let’s go back. I’m talking waaaay back, circa 1916.
CTH takes us to Ethiopia during the time of Haile Selassie and Emperor of Ethiopia. Ty Jones and Roslyn Ruff star as Macbeth and Lady Macbeth.

Marcus Garvey Park, Richard Rodgers Amphitheater, July 8-31. Tuesday-Sunday 8:00pm, Fridays 8:30pm

The Drilling Company’s Shakespeare in the Parking Lot: A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Serena Miller and Warren Jackson lead a fresh and diverse telling of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Billed as a fable of the Lower East Side, performances take place in the parking lot behind The Clemente Soto Velez Cultural and Educational Center, located at 114 Norfolk Street in the Lower East Side. Thursdays – Saturdays at 8:00 pm.

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Celebrity Takeover

Tituss Burgess Has New Music, A New Movie, & No Time For Mess + The Preacher’s Wife Musical Update

Broadway Black

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Tituss Burgess' Saint Tituss EP cover
Tituss Burgess' Saint Tituss EP cover

On Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen, Tituss Burgess gave us an update on his musical adaptation of the 1996 movie, The Preacher’s Wife – starring Denzel Washington and Whitney Houston. On the late-night talk show, a viewer called in to ask if there had been any updates regarding the show and Burgess shared that:

“ We are very close to signing with a hot-shot producer in New York, which means that the show is closer to appearing in London or here. But there’s also a recent development which could delay it for the better. You’ll find out about it later”

So not only do we know that the musical is still on its way to bless us, but there is an announcement about the show on the way! If you ask me, this is incredibly exciting. Tituss Burgess’ career has gone from stage to screen, and his abilities as an actor and singer are undeniable. Knowing that we are closer to seeing his skills as a musical theatre composer is mad exciting. Watch a clip from the interview above.

While we wait for The Preacher’s Wife Musical, listen to Burgess’ newly released EP Saint Tituss. Burgess sings his face off as he skillfully talks about issues that are personal and political — all while wrapping things up with a joyous celebration of resilience as positivity. He also has two songs that feature Daniel J. Watts including the single 45

St. Tituss is available on Spotify, apple music, and other streaming platforms.

He also has a new movie on the way. “Dolemite Is My Name” starring Eddie Murphy along with Burgess, Mike Epps, Chris Rock, & more will premiere at the Toronto Film Festival. A national release date has not been set as of yet but is sure to be on its way.

 

While discussing the new movie during the same interview, Cohen asked Burgess about his relationship with Murphy. The way Cohen presented the question insinuates there might have been a problem between the two because of a ‘problematic past with the gays’ on Murphy’s part. The response given by Burgess is swift and loaded with “you tried it, but you won’t get me”:

“He wasn’t problematic for Tituss. We had a wonderful time. We talked about Dreamgirls and he should have won the Oscasr, I believe. He was great. Any troubles he may have had with gay people I guess are gone because he loved me.”

It is the following facial expression and the interaction that comes afterward that makes live television great. You can see Burgess say something to someone off-camera which leads Cohen to ask what he’s saying. Burgess replies with a soon-to-be iconic response to everything: “Keep going, girl. Do your show.”

and this is why we live.

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Coming Soon

The Public Theater Will Present Hercules Musical & Hercules Is Black!

Drew Shade

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The Muses via Hercules film

We knew it was coming, we just didn’t know when. Back in 2017, we reported that a musical adaptation of the Disney movie Hercules would be headed to Broadway. Now we can confirm that is somewhat true.

Hercules will be the latest Disney musical to be made for the stage and will play Off-Broadway at the Public Theater’s Delacorte Theater in Central Park. As the final show of the Shakespeare in the Park season theater season performances will run August 31 through September 8 with a reading set to take place in April.

The role of Hercules will be played by a Black actor, according to the casting notice

The musical will include the Oscar-nominated “Go the Distance, along with other songs from the 1997 animated film by Alan Menken & David Zippel. Presented through an arrangement with Disney Theatrical Productions, the show will be directed by Lear deBessonet.  The creative team also includes a book by Kristoffer Diaz, & choreography by Chase Brock.

Before Hercules, Kenny Leon will direct the Much Ado About Nothing May 21 through June 23 to begin the Shakespeare in the Park season.

Casting for all both productions will be announced at a later date

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