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Power’s Omari Hardwick On How Denzel Washington Impacted His Life

Jerrica White

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Power is back in full swing and in its fourth season. Omari Hardwick is still fine as hell. Anika Noni Rose is giving her best praise in her role this season.

It goes without saying that we at Broadway Black are here for Power and we’re tuned in every Sunday. We’re also tuned into the story of generosity and brotherhood between Omari and Broadway Black legend, Denzel Washington.

The struggle is real and for Hardwick, that struggle is no different from anyone else. Before he made it big, he was substitute teaching and coaching football; where coincidentally his coaching John David led to a relationship with Denzel Washington and his wife, Pauletta.

“They gave me shelter when I didn’t have a place to stay or whatever but they sort of allowed me to be close enough to the family so I sort of transitioned into getting an agent…the whole thing…doing all these odd jobs.”

Hardwick was seconds away from signing on to be a firefighter before he booked a role with Spike Lee for “Sucker Free City.” However, things went wrong as they sometimes will, and the deal fell through. Although “The funds were low and the debts were high” the Washington’s gave Hardwick a reason “to smile, when he wanted to sigh.”

Well we’re surely happy Hardwick is giving his best life as “Ghost” on Power. Washington continues to grant gifts as he brings August Wilson’s 10-play Pittsburgh Cycle to HBO, with the exception of Fences.

Check out the full interview between “The Real’s” Loni Love and Omari Hardwick HERE.

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Events and Happenings

Iconic Entertainer Gregory Hines Honored With a Black Heritage Series Stamp

Drew Shade

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Savion Glover; Maurice Hines, Gregory’s brother; and Daria Hines, Gregory’s daughter Photo courtesy of USPS

The U.S. Postal Service honored iconic entertainer Gregory Hines with a Black Heritage Series stamp in a ceremony on January 28th. As the 42nd entry in the series, the stamp featuring a 1988 photo of a smiling Hines is now available at Post Offices and usps.com. 

At the ceremony Tony Award winner Savion Glover talked about the role Hines played in elevating tap into an art form and the value of his work. Joining him in the celebration were Maurice Hines, actor, dancer, choreographer, and Hines’ brother; Daria Hines, actress, costume designer, and Hines’ daughter; dancers Chloe and Maud Arnold; Tony Waag, the American Tap Dance Foundation’s artistic director, and tap dancer Jason Samuels Smith.

“I don’t exist without this man,” said Glover, “These young people that you see, they aren’t born without this. We are not here today without this.”

The Chief Postal Inspector, Gary Barksdale, who led the ceremony, said “Gregory Hines was an extraordinary artist in every sense of the word. This Forever stamp pays tribute to his life and career as an actor, singer and most importantly, as a performer whose unique style of tap dancing injected new artistry and excitement into a traditional American form.”

Gregory Hines’ Broadway credits include Eubie!, Sophisticated Ladies, & Comin’ Uptown,  all of which garnered him Tony Award nominations. He became a Tony Award winner for his starring role in “Jelly’s Last Jam” in 1992. In 2003 he passed away at 57 years old from cancer.

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Events and Happenings

Casts of Disney’s The Lion King, Frozen, & Aladdin Broadway Celebrate Black History Month

Drew Shade

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Noah Ricketts, Aisha Jackson, Donald Jones Jr. Photo by Darnell Bennett

It’s a beautiful time to be Black on Broadway. For Black History Month, the casts of The Lion King, Aladdin, and Frozen on Broadway came together in a celebratory photo shoot with photographer Darnell Bennett involving 35+ company cast members.

Take a look at the behind-the-scenes video above and the accompanying photos below.

Cast members included The Lion King‘s Tryphena WadeLawrence Keith Alexander, Brian C. Binion, Lidiwe DlaminiDonna Michelle VaughnLaMar Baylor, Kyle Lamar MitchellBradley GibsonJamal Lee Harris, Elisha BowmansRay MercerL. Steven TaylorBongi DumaKimberly MarableSyndee WintersCameron AmandusPearl KhweziJaysin McCollumAngelica EdwardsIndia Bolds, Bonita HamiltonTshidi Manye, & Bravita Threatt.

Also, Noah RickettsAisha JacksonDonald Jones Jr. of Frozen, and Aladdin‘s Tyler RobertsPaige Williams, Deonte L WarrenTiffany EvaristeMajor AttawayAmber OwensJamie Kasey PattersonApril HollowayKathryn AllisonAriel ReidJuwan CrawleyTrent SaundersDennis Stowe, and Stanley Martin.

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Twitter: @BroadwayBlack

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