Dr. Barbara Ann Teer’s National Black Theatre [NBT] announces the cast of the first workshop production for this year’s cohort of I Am Soul Playwriting Residency by playwright Lee Edward Colston II. Colston’s workshop production of The First Deep Breath will be February 13 – 17, 2019 and will be directed by Malika Oyetimein.
As part of NBT’s Soul Series L.A.B. [Liberating Artistic Bravery], The First Deep Breath will conclude an 18-month residency for Lee Edward Colston II as the institution celebrating NBT’s 50th season which is themed “Liberation: A Journey Beyond Walls.”
The full cast for this workshop production will be: Paris Campbell (Albert), Paris Crayton III (Leslie), SJ Hannah (Abdul Malik), Vanessa A. Jones (Ruth), Drew Shade (Tyree), Cole Taylor (AJ), Chelsea Lee Williams (Dee Dee), C. Kelly Wright (Pearl). NBT is also excited to have on the creative team: Izmir Ickbal (Set/Lights), Elia Chuaqui (Sound), Beylnda Hardin (PSM).
About The First Deep Breath: Pastor Albert Jones plans a special church service to honor his late daughter Diane on the sixth anniversary of her death. But when his eldest son, Abdul-Malik, returns home from prison, the First family of Mother Bethel Baptist Church is forced to confront a hornet’s nest of long-buried secrets. With each member of the Jones clan desperately fighting to stay afloat, sometimes a family that stays together drowns together.
Launched in 2012, I AM SOUL – Playwright Residency Program is the only program in the country that is dedicated to Black playwrights, whose work demonstrates exceptional artistic merit and excellence in the theatrical field, with a commitment to production. Coined as a dream MFA program this eighteen (18) month residency also seeks to unleash the soul of a playwright on the page so that they can develop, hone and explore new ways of artistic expression in a safe, supported and transformative environment. With I AM SOUL, NBT seeks to deepen the artistic relationship between Black theatrical institutions and Black playwrights in order to re-establish Black theatrical institutions as the foremost supporters and producers of new works created by Black playwrights.
Past residents: Mfoniso Udofia, Aurin Squire, Angelica Chéri, Derek Lee McPhatter, Nambi E. Kelley, Dennis A. Allen II
Current residents: Eric Micha Holmes, Lee Edward Colston II, Tracey Conyer Lee & Darrel Holnes.
Tickets for The First Deep Breath are now on sale. www.nationalblacktheatre.org
Sydnee Winters returns to The Lion King on Broadway
Sydnee Winters is back in the Shadowland at the Minskoff Theatre. Winters is returning to The Lion King in the role in which she made her Broadway debut. Taking over the role of Nala, from Adrienne Walker, who left the production to appear in the forthcoming Kiss Me, Kate revival.
Winters’ other Broadway credits include Pippin, Motown The Musical, and Hamilton. She’s back in the role after five years away from it. Having had this time to grow and have other experiences beyond the show, she’s back and she’s better! You can catch her on Broadway right now!
Included in the current cast is are Bradley Gibson as Simba, L. Steven Taylor as Mufasa, Tshidi Manye as Rafiki, Ben Jeffrey as Pumbaa, Fred Berman as Timon, Stephen Carlile as Scar, Bonita J. Hamilton as Shenzi, Mikee Castillo and Demi Singleton as Young Nala, Kenneth Aikens and Joshua Dubose as Young Simba,
Noah J. Ricketts Takes Over The Role of Kristoff in Frozen On Broadway
The Disney movie turned Broadway musical Frozen welcomes ensemble cast member Noah J. Ricketts into the role of Kristoff. Having understudied the role, he will now take over full-time after Jelani Alladin who originated the role.
He will begin performances Tuesday, February 19, 2019.
Ricketts also currently understudies the role of Pabbie. He joined the cast of Frozen directly from the Broadway and touring productions of Beautiful: The Carole King Musical.
Favorite regional credits include Terk, Tarzan® (WWT); C.C., Dreamgirls (North Shore Music Theatre); Jacob, La Cage (Summer Lyric); Hello, Dolly! (St. Louis MUNY); Macbeth (IAA Shakespeare Festival). A proud graduate of Interlochen Arts Academy and the Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music (CCM)
Check out the video below of Noah singing his heart out with “Corner of the Sky” from the musical Pippin
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