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Cleavant Derricks replaces David Jennings who has had to withdrawn from the production

Tue 17 Aug 2004 Cleavant Derricks replaces David Jennings who has had to withdrawn from the production Cleavant Derricks will assume the role of the 'Street Singer' from David Jennings who has withdrawn from the company of Brooklyn, The Musical due to surgery that required additional recovery time. Cleavant Derricks is returning to Broadway after an eighteen year absence. Cleavant Derricks won the 1982 Tony award for the role of James Thunder Early in 'Dreamgirls' and received a 1986 Tony nomination the role of Charleyin Bob Fosse's 'Big Deal'. Quote from Jeff Calhoun (Director), "We are very saddened that David will not be able to join us on Broadway. Having been with us from the very first workshop, he is an important part of this production. We wish David a speedy recovery and hope to work with him in the future. I was a fan of Cleavant when I saw him in Dreamgirls and am thrilled to be working with him on Brooklyn". Brooklyn, The Musical is scheduled to begin previews on 23 Sep 2004 and open officially on 21 Oct 2004 at the Plymouth Theatre. Brooklyn, The Musical will star Kevin Anderson (Taylor Collins), Eden Espinosa (Brooklyn), Cleavant Derricks (Street Singer), Ramona Keller (Paradice) and Karen Olivo (Faith). The cast will also include Manoel Felciano, Caren Lyn Manuel, Julie Reiber, Horace V. Rogers, Haneefah Wood. Brooklyn, The Musical is a new Broadway musical written by Mark Schoenfeld and Barri McPherson. It has direction & musical staging by Jeff Calhoun and music supervision by John McDaniel. With set design by Ray Klausen, costumes by Tobin Ost, lighting by Michael Gilliam, and sound by Jonathan Deans and Peter Hylenski. This production marks the Broadway debut for the writing collaboration of Mark Schoenfeld and Barri McPherson. Mark first met Barri in 1982 upon hearing her sing at a cabaret and hired her to record some of his music. Shortly thereafter, Barri moved to New Hampshire to raise a family. Years later, in 1990, Barri returned to New York to perform at a private-party gig. She involuntarily stopped at a remote street corner in Brooklyn Heights after hearing the sound of a voice she vaguely recognized. She discovered that Mark had become a homeless street performer, getting by on $40 a day. Barri invited Mark back to New Hampshire to stay with her husband and 1-month old baby. Mark repaid Barri by developing music with and for her and soon, the street poet and cabaret singer had the skeleton of a most unusual new musical. Leading the producing team that will bring Brooklyn, The Musical to Broadway are Producers Four, Jeff Calhoun and John McDaniel. Brooklyn, The Musical takes place on a street corner, where a troop of homeless street performers, act as modern day apostles. For some spare change and a few moments of your time, they will shed their homeless skin and become the bigger than life characters in a tale of discovery. Brooklyn, The Musical is a saga about a beautiful young Parisian songstress, whose fame and fortune could not fill the emptiness in her soul. Believing in her heart that the father she never knew might somehow, somewhere still be alive, she embarks on a search which leads to the city that bears her name. It is there she learns about the �American Way� and is confronted with greed, envy, and loss and the American way... and it is there in that city, that she and we discover our real identities and the true meaning of family, fame, fate and faith.

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