Broadway Runs with The Color Purple as New Musical Begins Nov. 1

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01 Nov 2005

La Chanze in the Alliance Theatre production of <I>The Color Purple</I>.
La Chanze in the Alliance Theatre production of The Color Purple.

Alice Walker's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel hits the stage of the Broadway Theatre as the new musical The Color Purple begins performances on Broadway.

Gary Griffin directs The Color Purple which will officially open Dec. 1. The work features a book by Pulitzer Prize-winner Marsha Norman ('night, Mother) and music by pop songwriters Brenda Russell, Allee Willis and Stephen Bray.

Spanning over 40 years, The Color Purple is "an inspiring family saga that tells the unforgettable story of a woman, who, through love, finds the strength to triumph over adversity and discover her unique voice in the world," as a release states. The show's score blends "gospel, jazz, ragtime and the blues."

"This story begins where all great stories start, with loss," bookwriter Norman previously told Playbill.com about the musical. To read more from the team, visit The Color Purple Takes Its Journey to Broadway.

Oprah Winfrey, who appeared as Sofia in the 1985 Steven Spielberg film version opposite Whoopi Goldberg as Celie and Danny Glover as Albert, is the sole above the-title producer. The Color Purple's Broadway productin team also includes Scott Sanders, Roy Furman, Quincy Jones, Creative Battery, Anna Fantaci & Cheryl Lachowicz, Independent Presenters Network, Lowy Family Group, Stephanie McClelland, Gary Winnick, Jan Kallish, Andrew Asnes & Adam Zotovich and Todd Johnson.



Surnameless star LaChanze (Once on This Island, Ragtime, Company) reprises her turn as the story's central character Celie from the world premiere at Atlanta's Alliance Theatre in fall 2004. Broadway newcomer Elisabeth Withers appears as Shug with Renée Elise Goldsberry (The Lion King) featured as Nettie, joining original Atlanta stars Felicia P. Fields as Sofia and Kingsley Leggs as Mister.

The cast also features Brandon Victor Dixon as Harpo, Krisha Marcano as Squeak and includes Jeannette Bayardelle, James Brown III, Eric L. Christian, Latrisa Coleman, Bobby Daye, Carol Dennis, Anika Ellis, Doug Eskew, Bahiyah Sayyed Gaines, Zipporah Gatling, Charles Gray, Stephanie Guiland-Brown, James Harkness, Francesca Harper, Kimberly Ann Harris, Chantylla Johnson, Grasan Kingsberry, Corinne McFarlane, Kenita R. Miller, JC Montgomery, Lou Myers, Angela Robinson, Nathaniel Stampley, Jamal Story, Leon Thomas III, Maia Nkenge Wilson and Virginia Woodruff.

The songlist includes "Overture," "Huckleberry Pie/Mysterious Ways," "Somebody Gonna Love You, "Our Prayer/I Really Want That Girl," "That Fine Mister," "Big Dog/Our Prayer (Reprise)," "Bring My Nettie Back," "Lily of the Field," "Dear God – Sofia," "A Tree Named Sofia," Hell No!," "Brown Betty," "Shug Avery Comin’ to Town," "Too Beautiful for Words," "Push Da Button," "Uh-Oh!," "What About Love?," "Africa," "The Color Purple," "A Church Ladies’ Easter," "With These Hands," "Miss Celie's Pants," "Is There Anything I Can Do for You?," "What About Love? (Reprise)," "I’m Here," "A Church Ladies' Fourth of July," "The Color Purple (Reprise)."

Donald Byrd choreographs for the musical. Orchestrations are by Jonathan Tunick, Kevin Stites is music supervisor and Linda Twine serves as musical director. The Color Purple design team features John Lee Beatty (scenic), Brian MacDevitt (lighting), Paul Tazewell (costume) and Jon Weston (sound).

Tickets for The Color Purple are currently on sale through (212) 239-6200, at the Broadway Theatre Box Office, at 1681 Broadway, or via the link below. For more information, visit the website at www.colorpurple.com.