Earth, Wind & Fire-Fueled Musical Hot Feet Opens on Broadway April 30

News   Earth, Wind & Fire-Fueled Musical Hot Feet Opens on Broadway April 30 Hot Feet, the new musical born of the Earth, Wind & Fire song catalog and directed by Maurice Hines, will open at Broadway's Hilton Theatre on April 30, after previews which began on April 20.

Allen Hidalgo as Louie in Hot Feet.
Allen Hidalgo as Louie in Hot Feet. Photo by Paul Kolnik

Hot Feet—the fourth "jukebox" musical to land on Broadway this season, after Lennon, Jersey Boys and Ring of Fire—is the new dance musical directed and choreographed by Hines, and featuring a book by Heru Ptah and music and lyrics by Maurice White of Earth, Wind & Fire fame.

The show's leads will be played by Vivian Nixon, Keith David, Ann Duquesnay, Allen Hidalgo, Wynonna Smith, Michael Balderrama and Samantha Pollino.

The ensemble Kevin Aubin, Brent Carter, Gerrard Carter, Dionne Figgins, Ramon Flowers, Keith Anthony Fluitt, Karla Puno Garcia, Nakia Henry, Duane Lee Holland, Dana Marie Ingraham, IquailS. Johnson, Terace Jones, Dominique Kelley, Matthew Warner Keirenan, Steve Konopelski, Sumie Maeda, Jon-Paul Mateo, Vasthy E. Mompoint, Tera-Lee Polin, Samatha Pollino, Sandra Reaves Phillips, Danita Salamida, Caesar Samayoa, Monique Smith, Daryl Spiers, Felicity Stiverson, Hollie E. Wright.

Hot Feet, according to a press statement, is a "Faustian tale about a beautiful young dancer — Kalimba, whose whole life's dreams and ambition are to be a Broadway dancer. Kalimba is cajoled to dance with a pair of magical and enchanted red shoes; when she puts them on they begin to take control of the talented dancer's fate."

The creative team for the production comprises James Noone (set design), Paul Tazewell (costume design), Clifton Taylor (lighting design) and Acme Sound Partners (sound design). New York audiences should expect a show slightly different from the one seen during a pre-Broadway tryout at Washington, DC's National Theatre. Work has been done on the book by Ptah, which was particularly taken to task by DC critics. The musical may also be a trimmer version of itself; in D.C., it clocked in at two hours and 45 minutes, the last 20 minutes consisting of an extended ballet sequence called the "Hot Feet Ballet."

David's many Broadway and Off-Broadway credits include Seven Guitars, Othello and Jelly's Last Jam.. Duquesnay won a Tony Award for Bring in 'da Noise, Bring in 'de Funk. Balderrama appeared in Urban Cowboy and Movin' Out. Smith performed on Broadway in Grind and Sophisticated Ladies.

Maurice Hines began his career at the age of five as a dancer alongside his brother and, later, his father. His Broadway credits include appearances in Eubie!, Bring Back Birdie and Sophisticated Ladies. Tony Award nominated for Uptown...It's Hot!, Hines went on to direct Satchmo, Harlem Suite and become the first African-American director for Radio City Music Hall.

Earth, Wind & Fire racked up a string of hits in the '70s and early '80s. A large ensemble, the group's sound was characterized by gladful, buoyant melodies, falsetto harmonies and the use of horns. After early funk-based hits such as "Shining Star," the act moved in a romantic period of melodic, almost sing-a-long anthems such as "Sing a Song," "Getaway," "September" and "After the Love Has Gone." They largely dropped off the charted after the early '80s hit "Let's Groove." White went on to a solo career.

TransAmerica presents Hot Feet, produced by Rudy Durand in association with Kalimba Entertainment, Inc.

Vivian Nixon (center) and the ensemble perform
Vivian Nixon (center) and the ensemble perform