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Celebrity Takeover

Full Cast of The Color Purple Starring Jennifer Hudson, Cynthia Erivo, & Danielle Brooks Announced

Drew Shade

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We’ve known that it was coming for some time but we only had a few pieces of the puzzle. The Color Purple is a Tony Award winning musical that will return to Broadway starring Jennifer Hudson as Shug Avery, Cynthia Erivo as Celie, & Danielle Brooks as Sofia, as previously reported. Other principal cast members previously announced include Kyle Scatliffe as “Harpo”, Isaiah Johnson as “Mister” and Joaquina Kalukango as “Nettie”. Oprah Winfrey is also one of the producers attached, just like she was in the original, and today they announced the full cast list. 

Joining the principal cast members are Grasan Kingsberry (The Color Purple original 2005 cast) and Kevyn Morrow (A Chorus Line) will be Dwayne Clark (Spiderman), Lawrence Clayton (Bells Are Ringing), Carrie Compere (Holler If Ya Hear Me), Bre Jackson (Book of Mormon), Ken Robinson (Memphis), Antoine L. Smith (Memphis) and Rema Webb (The Lion King). Phoenix Best, Patrice Covington, Adrianna Hicks, Carla R. Stewart and Akron Watson will all make their Broadway debuts with The Color Purple revival.

From The Color Purple Website;

Oscar, Golden Globe and Grammy winner Jennifer Hudson(Dreamgirls) has dazzled the world with her matchless talent. This fall, she makes her long-awaited Broadway debut as the sultry Shug Avery in the joyous and triumphant musical The Color Purple.

This unforgettable and intensely moving new production mesmerized audiences when it premiered at London’s acclaimed Menier Chocolate Factory, where critics hailed it as “a revelation” (Mark Shenton, The Stage). Now, this American classic comes to Broadway with a powerhouse cast including celebrated London star Cynthia Erivo, who will recreate her electrifying performance as Celie, along with “Orange is the New Black” star Danielle Brooksas Sophia.

With a soul-raising score of jazz, gospel, ragtime and blues, The Color Purple gives an exhilarating new spirit to this Pulitzer Prize-winning story.

The new staging cuts approximately 30 minutes of material from the original production. Tickets for the musical are on sale to the general public, the prices range between $75.00 and $145.00. The production begins previews Nov. 10 at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre. Opening night is set for Dec. 10. You can purchase your tickets here or by calling 212.239.6200.

Founder/Editor-In-Chief of BroadwayBlack.com | Actor | Artist | 1/3 of @OffBookPodcast | Theatre connoisseur | All Audra Everything | Caroline over Change | I'm Not Charl Brown | Norm Lewis is my play cousin | Producing an all-black production of Mame starring Jenifer Lewis in my head

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Box Office

Dave Chappelle Live On Broadway Grosses Over 1.4 Million Despite Blackout

Drew Shade

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Dave Chappelle/Netflix. Photo by Mathieu Bitton
Dave Chappelle/Netflix. Photo by Lester Cohen

Dave Chappelle/Netflix. Photo by Lester Cohen

Comedian Dave Chappelle made his Broadway debut July 9th with Dave Chappelle Live on Broadway at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre.

Originally scheduled to close July 13th the residency was extended an additional week through July 20. Made possible by the In Residence on Broadway series which is a collaboration between Live Nation, The Araca Group, and Entertainment Benefits Group.

Saturday nights are the money makers on Broadway especially during the middle of July, in what we New Yorkers like to call tourist season. However, that all came crashing down when a power outage shut down most of the 41 Broadway houses this past Saturday. The blackout didn’t stop the show for most of those Broadway casts. They took to singing in the New York City streets, but the overall Broadway ticket sales took a 10% hit for the week.

Chappelle somehow came out unbothered by the blackout in his first week on Broadway at the Lunt-Fontanne. In just four nights on Broadway, the comedian raked in over 1.4 million, making him the 6th highest selling ticket of the week with an average ticket price of $243. He followed behind Hamilton at $2.67m  The Lion King at $2.39m, To Kill a Mockingbird at $1.7m, Wicked at $1.5m, and Moulin Rouge at 1.49m.

So, your Saturday night show is canceled, what do you do? Dave Chappelle does to impromptu sets at Gramercy Theatre and The Comedy Cellar.

 

 

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So there was a blackout on Broadway…. all roads lead to the #ComedyCellar.

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Celebrity Takeover

Cuba Gooding Jr. Returns to the Role of Billy Flynn in Chicago

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Cuba Gooding Jr. in a promotional photo as Billy Flynn.

Show me the money! Cuba Gooding Jr. (A Trip to Bountiful) returns to Broadway’s ‘Chicago.’

Cuba Gooding Jr. in a promotional photo as Billy Flynn.

Oscar Winner and Broadway alumni, Cuba Gooding Jr., has returned to Broadway. Cuba has returned to ‘Chicago’ through February 10th. After a previous Broadway and West End run in the show, Cuba is back playing Billy Flynn. Now taking on the role for the third time, Cuba is back and better than Ever.

“This is the first time I’ve sang professionally, period. This is my first musical” Cuba said, “The hardest thing I’ve ever done physically is singing and dancing, eight shows a week, six days a week.”

The Oscar winner returned to the Ambassador Theatre on January 7th to do a month-long run in the show. He’d previously spent six weeks in the role in October of 2018 and before that he’d opened the show’s west end revival. Cuba is the latest in the line of stars to join the Broadway company of Chicago. Cuba is joining the likes of Todrick Hall, Tony Yazbeck, Usher Raymond, and Wayne Brady as one of the few stars to play Billy Flynn on Broadway. Cuba is ready to bring the “razzle dazzle” to the Ambassador Theatre, eight shows a week, and we’re prepared to see him hit his mark and take the stage.

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