Cochran Steps Into Goodman's Proof, as de Shields Exits for Broadway's Prymate.

News   Cochran Steps Into Goodman's Proof, as de Shields Exits for Broadway's Prymate.
Andre de Shields, who was set to star in the Goodman Theatre's staging of David Auburn's durable drama, Proof, has left that production in order to honor a previous commitment to appear in Mark Medoff's Prymate, which is headed for Broadway this April.

Andre De Shields
Andre De Shields Photo by Aubrey Reuben

De Shields will be replaced in the production by John H. Cochran. Dates are March 27-April 25.

Cochran will play Robert, the brilliant but mentally unbalanced mathematician who counsels his troubled daughter Catherine, who may or may not have inherited her dad's genius, as well as his instability.

Playing the daughter is Karen Aldridge. Catherine's sister Claire is portrayed by Ora Jones, and Dwain Perry is Hal, Catherine's timid suitor. The entire cast for the play is African-American—something sought by the Chuck Smith from the time the title was scheduled. The show is thought to be the first all-black professional staging of the play.

De Shields stopped the show each night in The Full Monty with his roof-raising song, "Big Black Man." He was nominated for a Tony Award for his work. More recently, he starred in the new revival of poet Derek Walcott's 1967 play Dream on Monkey Mountain at Off-Broadway Classical Theatre of Harlem—a rare non-musical role for the actor. His previous nomination was for 1997's Play On!. Other Broadway credits include The Wiz, Ain't Misbehavin' and 1984's André De Shields' Haarlem Nocturne, a revue which he conceived, wrote, directed, composed, choreographed and performed. He also appeared at the Goodman in Waiting for Godot.

Proof began life at Manhattan Theatre Club in 2000. It then transferred to Broadway, where it ran for more than two years and won the Tony Award for Best Play and Pulitzer Prize.

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