Completing the cast are Chaundra Cameron, Danielle Chambers, Ryan Duncan, Jessica Fields, Carmen Ruby Flloyd, Robert H. Fowler, McKenzie Frye, Jene Hernandez, Ahmaya Knoelle Higginson, Vanessa Jones, Ano Okera, John Eric Parker, Jene Hernandez and Christopher Zelno.
Mama, I Want to Sing! has book and lyrics by Vy Higginson and Ken Wydro, with original music contributed by Rudolph V. Hawkins, Pat Holley, Steven Taylor and Doris Troy.
The musical centers on a preacher's daughter who makes the leap from church choir-singer to pop star. The story is based on the life of composer Higginsen's sister Doris Troy, the singer known for the 1963 hit "Just One Look." It played in New York in 1983 at the Heckscher Theatre and London in 1995. Ciara, Patti LaBelle, Lynn Whitfield and Ben Vereen, star in the forthcoming film adaptation.
The Amas staging is directed by Rajendra Ramoon Maharaj and has musical direction by David Alan Bunn and choreography by Michael Susko and James Harkness. Presented by Amas Musical Theatre, the gala evening also honors Tony Award-winning actress Phylicia Rashad. Rashad, along with the accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers, will be honored with the "Rosie Award," named for Amas founder Rosetta LeNoire.
Founded by Rosetta LeNoire in 1968, Amas Musical Theatre has been an award-winning pioneer in diversity and multi-ethnic casting in the performing arts. Among the productions that have roots with Amas are Wanda's World, Stormy Weather … Imagining Lena Horne, SHOUT! The Mod Musical, Lone Star Love, Zanna Don't, From My Hometown, 4 Guys Named Jose … and Una Mujer Named Maria, and Langston Hughes' Little Ham.
The Amas benefit concert of Mama, I Want to Sing! begins at 7 PM at New World Stages. Tickets are available by calling (212) 744-1048 or by visiting www.amasmusical.org.
New World Stages is located in Manhattan at 340 West 50th Street.