The exhibition, which will begin June 2 at 7 PM — one hour before the musical's first preview performance — "will invite patrons to learn about the history of Hip-Hop through one-of-a-kind artifacts and memorabilia, interact with 'Dreams Walls' by inscribing it with their dreams, and view a dynamic mural featuring the 4 Elements of Hip-Hop: DJing, Emceeing. B-Boying and Graffiti," according to press notes.
Holler If Ya Hear Me ticketholders can view the exhibition at no additional cost one hour prior to each performance. The exhibition will continue throughout the run of the production.
The National Museum of Hip-Hop (NMoH) is a "collective of intellectuals dedicated to the institutionalization and preservation of Hip-Hop Culture. NMoH has a large collection of historic hip-hop artifacts and actively interprets and defines historic hip-hop facts and information, which will all be available on its website, digital properties and at physical exhibitions around the world. NMoH is the first and only state-chartered museum for hip-hop-also accredited by the NY Board of Education." Learn more at HipHopMuseum.org and at Facebook.com/HipHopMuseum.
The Palace, which recently underwent a $200,000 renovation to reposition the ground-level orchestra seats into a stadium-seating configuration, is located at 1564 Broadway (at 47th Street).
Written by Todd Kreidler and directed by Kenny Leon, Holler If Ya Hear Me will feature slam poet, actor, singer and musician Saul Williams ("Slam") as John with Christopher Jackson (In the Heights, After Midnight) as Vertus, Saycon Sengbloh (Motown, Fela!) as Corinne, Ben Thompson (Matilda) as Griffy, Tony nominee John Earl Jelks (Radio Golf) as Street Preacher, Joshua Boone (Brownsville Song [b side for Tray] at Actors Theatre of Louisville) as Darius, Dyllon Burnside ("Prison Break") as Anthony and Tony winner Tonya Pinkins (Jelly's Last Jam; Caroline, or Change; Play On!) as Mrs. Weston. Rounding out the cast are Tracee Beazer (Memphis), Afi Bijou (Fela!), Mel Charlot (three-time World Hip Hop Champion), Carrie Compere (Shrek national tour), Otis Cotton, Ryan Davis (danced for Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj), Brandon Gill (Neighbors at The Public), Ariana Groover (Bare Off-Broadway), F. Michael Haynie (Wicked), Jared Joseph (The Book of Mormon national tour), Jahi Kearse (Baby It's You), Muata Langley (freestyle Krump performer), Candace Maxwell, Valentine Norton ("American Idol"), Christina Sajous (Spider-Man Turn off the Dark), Charlene "Chi Chi" Smith, Jaime Lincoln Smith (Ruined Off-Broadway), Donald Webber, Jr. (Motown) and Joaquina Kalukango (Antony and Cleopatra).
Opening night is set for June 19.
Holler If Ya Hear Me, the world inside Tupac Shakur's music and lyrics, "blazes to life in a non-biographical story about friendship, family, revenge, change and hope. Inner city lives struggle for peace against the daily challenges they face in this entertaining and original musical," according to press notes. "Through the poetry of one of the 20th century's most influential and culturally prominent voices, we are given a window into realities of the streets still relevant today."
Joining director Leon (A Raisin in the Sun, Fences, The Mountaintop) and author Kreidler (Guess Who's Coming to Dinner and direction of How I Learned What I Learned) on the creative team are Tony Award-winning choreographer Wayne Cilento (Wicked, The Who's Tommy, How to Succeed…, Aida, Sweet Charity) and musical supervisor Daryl Waters (Bring in 'Da Noise, Bring In 'Da Funk; The Color Purple; Memphis).
Other members of the creative team includes scenic designer Pierce (The Other Place, Shatner's World) based on original concepts by David Gallo; projections designer Zachary G. Borovay (No Man's Land, Waiting for Godot); costume designer Reggie Ray (Stick Fly); lighting designer Mike Baldassari (Cabaret, Titanic, First Date); and sound designers John Shivers (Kinky Boots) and David Patridge (Soul Doctor).
Holler If Ya Hear Me is produced on Broadway by Afeni Shakur, Eric L. Gold, Chunsoo Shin, Jessica Green and Marcy Kaplan-Gold. The general manager is Richard Martini for KL Management.