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Maiysha Kai Maiysha Kai Sep 10, 2019. 14 comments

'It Should Cost You Something': Playwright Jeremy O. Harris Sets the Record Straight on Slave Play as It Debuts on Broadway

'It Should Cost You Something': Playwright Jeremy O. Harris Sets the Record Straight on Slave Play as It Debuts on Broadway

Black art rarely emerges without controversy. Our creations are inherently political, specifically because this country never intended for them to exist in the first place. In fact, 400 years after the start of the transatlantic slave trade, our trauma is still so present, many of us would prefer to distance ourselves from that history altogether.

Understandable, then, was the concern and...

14 Comments

Tonja Renée Stidhum Tonja Renée Stidhum Aug 20, 2019. 7 comments

Love, Peace and Soul Train May Be Coming to Broadway in 2021 to Mark 50th Anniversary of TV Series Debut

Love, Peace and Soul Train May Be Coming to Broadway in 2021 to Mark 50th Anniversary of TV Series Debut

Raise the curtains for a Don Cornelius-esque intro, because Soul Train is coming to Broadway!

That’s right, a musical based on the TV series created and hosted by Cornelius will be making its way to the most acclaimed stage in theatre.

As Deadline reports:

The musical will feature more than 20 hit songs from the era while telling the personal story of Cornelius as he creates the television...

7 Comments

Dara Sharif Dara Sharif Jul 25, 2019. 7 comments

Violated: Audra McDonald Calls Out Playgoer Who Snapped Photo of Her During Nude Scene

Violated: Audra McDonald Calls Out Playgoer Who Snapped Photo of Her During Nude Scene

The the-a-tah (or theater to the uninitiated) used to be should be a bastion of taste, class and grace as we immerse ourselves fully in the world being created on the stage by actors of immense skill and talent.

But somebody violated what should have been a safe space of artistic expression over the weekend when they decided it would be a cool thing to take a photo of Broadway great Audra...

7 Comments

Tonja Renée Stidhum Tonja Renée Stidhum Jun 20, 2019. 2 comments

August Wilson's Ma Rainey's Black Bottom Film Adaptation Confirmed With Viola Davis and Chadwick Boseman to Star, Denzel Washington to Produce

August Wilson's Ma Rainey's Black Bottom Film Adaptation Confirmed With Viola Davis and Chadwick Boseman to Star, Denzel Washington to Produce

Another one of August Wilson’s brilliant plays is coming to the silver screen! Get ready to sound the trumpets because this time, it’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.

The film’s synopsis, per its press release:

When Ma Rainey, the “Queen of the Blues,” makes a record in a studio in Chicago, 1927, tensions boil between her, her white agent and producer, and bandmates.

The film adaptation will boast a...

2 Comments

Karu F. Daniels Karu F. Daniels Jun 15, 2019. 5 comments

Otis Williams of The Temptations Weighs in on Hitting the Great White Way, His Mortality, and Patti LaBelle’s Big Lie

Otis Williams of The Temptations Weighs in on Hitting the Great White Way, His Mortality, and Patti LaBelle’s Big Lie

Otis Williams is on a roll.

The founder and only original surviving member of legendary Motown group The Temptations is basking in the glory of seeing the fruits of his labor pay off with a hit Broadway musical, and recent induction into the Apollo Theater Walk of Fame.

“I never would have imagined this when we started out, first coming to the Apollo in the early 1960s,” Williams told The Root....

5 Comments

Maiysha Kai Maiysha Kai Jun 10, 2019. 3 comments

Stage Presence: The Stars Show Out for the 2019 Tony Awards

Stage Presence: The Stars Show Out for the 2019 Tony Awards

Feathers, tulle, velvet, yards of train and even more star power; the theatrical community celebrated its biggest honors Sunday night at the 73rd Annual Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall in New York City.

While black talent didn’t take home all the Tonys we’d hoped, we nevertheless made a major showing on the red carpet (fittingly backed with a Pride-striped wall of roses), where two of our...

3 Comments

Corey Townsend Corey Townsend Apr 25, 2019. 5 comments

‘Somebody Can Send Your Luggage’: Matthew Knowles to Bring to Life the Story of Destiny’s Child

‘Somebody Can Send Your Luggage’: Matthew Knowles to Bring to Life the Story of Destiny’s Child

Not only is the writing on the walls, but it’s also on a new script of a stage production detailing the evolution of Destiny’s Child.

According to Broadway, Beyoncé’s father, Matthew Knowles wants to “pull back the curtain,” and tell the story of Destiny’s Children through his eyes. This the group that brought us continuous hits that stuck like grits was originally comprised of Beyoncé...

5 Comments

Maiysha Kai Maiysha Kai Apr 12, 2019.

Redefining the Role: LaTanya Richardson Jackson Finds a Well-Deserved Spotlight in Broadway's To Kill a Mockingbird

Redefining the Role: LaTanya Richardson Jackson Finds a Well-Deserved Spotlight in Broadway's To Kill a Mockingbird

Many know her as one-half of one of Hollywood’s most enduring marriages, but LaTanya Richardson Jackson (wife of Samuel L. Jackson), is an acting powerhouse in her own right. Just ask the audiences currently experiencing her talent nightly in Broadway’s acclaimed production of To Kill a Mockingbird.

Scripted by award-winning writer, producer and director Aaron Sorkin (The West Wing), produced...

Aliya Semper Ewing Aliya Semper Ewing Apr 07, 2019. 1 comments

Phenomenal Woman: Maya Angelou’s Legacy Is Coming to Broadway

Phenomenal Woman: Maya Angelou’s Legacy Is Coming to Broadway

With the support of her son, Guy Johnson, the life and writings of poet Maya Angelou are being developed into a Broadway stage performance.

Maya Angelou was (and still is) a force of nature. As a poet, author, and recipient of both the National Medal of Arts and Presidential Medal of Freedom, Angelou’s career spanned over six decades. Her dynamic existence will now be given new life on the...

1 Comments

Maiysha Kai Maiysha Kai Jan 16, 2019. 21 comments

Broadway Legend Carol Channing Dies at 97, 'Proud as Can Be' of Her Black Heritage

Broadway Legend Carol Channing Dies at 97, 'Proud as Can Be' of Her Black Heritage

“No white woman can do it like I did,” Carol Channing told CNN host Larry King in 2003. The beloved singer and actress enjoyed more than 70 years of success on stage and screen before dying of natural causes on Tuesday morning in her home in Rancho Mirage, Calif. Channing was 97 years old.

The Seattle, Washington-born Channing, best known for originating the titular role in Hello, Dolly on...

21 Comments

Anne Branigin Anne Branigin Dec 14, 2018. 6 comments

On Doctor’s Orders, Michelle Williams Steps Away From Broadway Musical

On Doctor’s Orders, Michelle Williams Steps Away From Broadway Musical

Michelle Williams is taking a leave of absence from her role as Erzulie in the Broadway musical Once on This Island, on the advice of her doctors. As Newsweek reports, the news was shared in a statement from the play’s showrunners, who announced on Wednesday that Williams’ leave of absence was “effective immediately.”

Understudy Cassondra James will step in for Williams until Dec. 26, after...

6 Comments

Sep 22, 2018. 2 comments

Noma Dumezweni on Being Hermione, a Mom and a Brit on Broadway

Noma
Dumezweni on Being Hermione, a Mom and a Brit on Broadway

If you ask the average American if they know the name Noma Dumezweni, the truth is, they may not. But ask any follower of live theater or, better yet, any fan of the Harry Potter wizarding world, and they are quick to answer, “Of course! She’s amazing!”

That is because Dumezweni is both an award-winning British television, film and stage actress, and is currently starring in Harry Potter and...

2 Comments

Montana Couser Montana Couser Jun 20, 2018. 3 comments

Michael Jackson Musical Headed to Broadway 

Michael Jackson Musical Headed to Broadway 

It was only a matter of time before we’d see “Michael Jackson: The Musical.”

Everyone’s favorite pop singer, Michael Jackson, is expected to have a Broadway show in 2020 that tells the story of his life. Jackson’s estate and Columbia Live Stage said that they have agreed to develop the stage musical about the artist, Variety reports.

With the existence of shows such as Thriller Live, Michael...

3 Comments

Danielle Young Danielle Young May 23, 2018.

Watch: James Monroe Iglehart Says the World Takes Notice of Black People

Watch: James Monroe Iglehart Says the World Takes Notice of Black People

We get the chance to chat with a lot of our favorite black celebrities, tastemakers and thought leaders, so we decided to start asking them about their pride in being black.

Many of them talked about our resilience and strength throughout history, some talked about our undeniable talents, while others mentioned our dance skills, dopeness and more. Whatever the reasoning, it’s clear...

Danielle Young Danielle Young May 23, 2018. 2 comments

‘Rafiki’ Actress Explains Why The Lion King Is One of Broadway’s Blackest and Most Legendary Shows Ever

‘Rafiki’ Actress Explains Why The Lion King Is One of Broadway’s Blackest and Most Legendary Shows Ever

The Lion King is still one of my favorite Disney movies (and stories) of all time. And I am obviously not alone. The movie has stretched onto the Broadway stage and been slaying for over 20 years! There’s no way this musical would have that sort of staying power if it wasn’t your favorite’s favorite.

The Lion King made its move to the stage in July 1997 in Minneapolis at the Orpheum Theatre...

2 Comments

Danielle C. Belton Danielle C. Belton Apr 26, 2018. 3 comments

Once Upon Once on This Island With Tamyra Gray

Once Upon Once on This Island With Tamyra Gray
AntisocialThe society column for people afraid of society, written by The Root's Editor-in-Chief and resident Bipolar Disorder expert/sufferer.  

There are probably a few ways to read the wondrous musical Once on This Island, which originally debuted in 1990 and was revived on Broadway in New York City in December 2017.

Perhaps it’s a lesson about following your heart against incredible...

3 Comments

Apr 19, 2018.

Broadway Dancer Admits to Killing Boyfriend Via Facebook Post

Broadway Dancer Admits to Killing Boyfriend Via Facebook Post

Marcus Bellamy, a 32-year-old dancer on the Broadway stage, allegedly murdered his boyfriend, Bernardo Almonte, in their walkup in the Bronx borough of New York City and then took to Facebook to confess, according to the New York Daily News.

"Forgive me,” he wrote Friday after reportedly beating and strangling Almonte. “I did it for love. I did it because I love you. He told me love and hate...

Danielle Young Danielle Young Apr 08, 2018. 8 comments

This Easter, We Get a Black Jesus and His Name Is John Legend

This Easter, We Get a Black Jesus and His Name Is John Legend

What are you doing this Easter Sunday? I’ve got a suggestion: Check out one of the most iconic musicals ever, Jesus Christ Superstar, live on your TV screens on NBC. Andrew Lloyd Webber’s powerful rock opera, which chronicles the final week of Jesus’ life, is being resurrected as Jesus Christ Superstar Live! with John Legend as Jesus, Sara Bareilles as Mary Magdalene, Alice Cooper as King...

8 Comments

Maiysha Kai Maiysha Kai Jan 19, 2018. 2 comments

Sighted Eyes/Feeling Heart Is a Loving Look at the Legacy of Lorraine Hansberry

Sighted Eyes/Feeling Heart Is a Loving Look at the Legacy of Lorraine Hansberry

I wanted to be able to come here and speak with you on this occasion because you are young, gifted and black. ... I, for one, can think of no more dynamic combination that a person might be. ... And that is why I say to you that, though it be a thrilling and marvelous thing to be merely young and gifted in such times, it is doubly so, doubly dynamic—to be young, gifted and...

2 Comments

Breanna Edwards Breanna Edwards Jan 07, 2018. 15 comments

Broadway Star Ben Vereen Accused of Sexually Assaulting Young Actresses During Production of Hair

Broadway Star Ben Vereen Accused of Sexually Assaulting Young Actresses During Production of <i>Hair</i>

The fallout from the #MeToo movement has only just begun, and Broadway legend Ben Vereen is the latest to face accusations of abuse after several young actresses came forward accusing the star of sexually assaulting them during the 2015 production of Hair.

According to the New York Daily News, the women, all part of the Venice Theatre production outside of Tampa, Fla., accused Vereen of...

15 Comments