'for colored girls' sets early Broadway closing date
The show will play its final performance May 22.
for colored girls is at the end of its rainbow. The first Broadway revival of for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf will play its final performance at the Booth Theatre on May 22. The limited run was initially scheduled to go through August 14.
Ntozake Shange's for colored girls premiered at The Public Theater in 1976 before moving on to a Broadway run at the Booth. More than 40 years later, history repeated itself, with a 2019 Public Theater revival giving way to the 2022 Broadway production. Camille A. Brown, who choreographed the 2019 Public production, took on the dual role of director/choreographer for the Broadway transfer, making her Broadway directorial debut.
for colored girls is a "choreopoem," a work Shange coined to describe a piece of theatre that combines poetry, dance, music, and speech to tell a nontraditional story. In the case of for colored girls, the story is the lived experience of Black women, seven of whom are in the cast and are known only by the color of the rainbow they wear. Each woman recites Shange's poems about survival, womanhood, racism, sisterhood, and more while also performing movement. The groundbreaking show celebrates the resilience and sisterhood of Black women, and all their diverse experiences, in a hostile world.
The cast of the Broadway revival includes Amara Granderson as Lady in Orange, Tendayi Kuumba as Lady in Brown, Kenita R. Miller as Lady in Red, Okwui Okpokwasili as Lady in Green, Stacey Sargeant as Lady in Blue, Alexandria Wailes as Lady in Purple, and D. Woods as Lady in Yellow.
Performances began on April 1 ahead of an April 20 opening night. The New York Theatre Guide review of for colored girls reads, "The choreopoem ... focuses on establishing emotional rapport with audiences through the lyricism of Black language and customs as Shange experienced them. In for colored girls, Black women are represented by different colors, such as Lady in Blue (Stacey Sargeant, delightful) or Lady in Brown (Tendayi Kuumba, a lioness), and given rhapsodic poems that plumb every hue."
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