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The Scottsboro Boys announces Broadway casting

««««(out of four)!  A MASTERWORK – daring and highly entertaining!

If you see one show this season, make it THE SCOTTSBORO BOYS!”

Elisabeth Vincentelli, NEW YORK POST

««««(out of four)! Susan Stroman is in top form here!

Soaring music, some of Kander & Ebb’s best!”


“Pitch perfect.  A STAGGERINGLY INVENTIVE piece of musical theatre.

Entertainment of the highest order, with INSPIRED direction and choreography

by Susan Stroman.  An EXHILIRATING evening of theatre!”

Michael Kuchwara, ASSOCIATED PRESS








Music and lyrics by JOHN KANDER and FRED EBB


Direction and Choreography by SUSAN STROMAN

Initial casting has been announced for the Broadway production of THE SCOTTSBORO BOYS, the exhilarating new Kander & Ebb musical.  Following a sold out, critically acclaimed and award-winning run Off-Broadway, THE SCOTTSBORO BOYS will open on Broadway on Sunday, October 31 at the Lyceum Theatre (149 West 45th Street).   Previews will begin on Thursday, October 7.

Prior to Broadway, THE SCOTTSBORO BOYS will play a limited engagement at the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, MN.  The production will play July 31 through September 25 on the McGuire Proscenium Stage.

Joshua Henry, currently starring in American Idiot on Broadway, will play the role of Haywood Patterson.  He has also been featured in the original Broadway cast of In the Heights and in the City Center production of The Wiz.  He joins ten cast members from the Vineyard production, who will recreate their performances on Broadway and at the Guthrie Theater: Sean Bradford as Ozie Powell and Ruby Bates, Josh Breckenridge as Olen Montgomery, Derrick Cobey as Andy Wright, Colman Domingo as Mr. Bones, Rodney Hicks as Clarence Norris, Kendrick Jones as Willie Roberson, Forrest McClendon as Mr. Tambo, Julius Thomas III as Roy Wright, Sharon Washington as The Lady and Christian Dante White as Charles Weems and Victoria Price.   Broadway casting for the roles of The Interlocutor and Eugene Williams will be announced soon.

THE SCOTTSBORO BOYS is the thrilling final collaboration by musical theatre giants John Kander and Fred Ebb (Chicago, Cabaret). Based on the notorious “Scottsboro” case in the 1930s (in which nine African-American men were unjustly accused of a terrible crime) this daring and wildly entertaining musical explores a fascinating chapter in American history with brilliant originality. This critically-acclaimed production, directed and choreographed by five-time Tony Award winner Susan Stroman (The Producers) and featuring a book by David Thompson (who adapted the script for Chicago‘s record-breaking revival), comes to Broadway following a sold-out run at the Vineyard Theatre.

The production is the winner of the 2010 Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Musical and the 2010 Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Off-Broadway Musical and a 2010 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Lyrics.

THE SCOTTSBORO BOYS had its world premiere earlier this year at the Vineyard Theatre, where it was heralded by Entertainment Weekly as “a cause for rejoicing,” “a masterwork” by the New York Post, “staggeringly inventive” by the Associated Press and “dazzling, riveting and toe-tapping with real teeth” by Variety.  NY1 called the production “one of the most satisfyingly original shows to open in a very long time!,” while Bloomberg News raved “Susan Stroman is in top form here — razor sharp dancing and soaring music, some of Kander and Ebb’s best!”

Set design is by Beowulf Borritt, costume design is by Toni-Leslie James, lighting design is Ken Billington and sound design is by Peter Hylenski.  Orchestrations are by Larry Hochman, with musical arrangements by Glen Kelly.  Music direction is by David Loud.

THE SCOTTSBORO BOYS will be produced on Broadway by Barry and Fran Weissler, Jacki Barlia Florin and The Vineyard Theatre.

Tickets ($39.50 – $131.50; Premium $251.50) are available by calling Telecharge.com at 212-239-6200 or online at www.telecharge.com. Performances will be Tuesday through Sunday at 8:00 PM, with matinees Saturday and Sunday at 3:00 PM.

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SEAN BRADFORD (Ozie Powell/Ruby Bates) created this role in The Scottsboro Boys at the Vineyard and Guthrie Theaters.  He made his Broadway debut as a Simba cover in Disney’s The Lion King after graduating from Northwestern University. Other credits include The Yellow Wood, directed by BD Wong, Was, directed by Tina Landau and CBS’ “My Broadway Debut”.  Sean is the Executive Director of Broadway in South Africa, which uses the arts to empower children in the U.S. and abroad. www.sean-bradford.com, www.broadwayinsouthafrica.org

JOSH BRECKENRIDGE(Olen Montgomery) created this role in The Scottsboro Boys at the Vineyard and Guthrie Theaters.  Broadway: The Ritz. Off-Broadway: Saved (Playwrights Horizons). Regional credits include: Hairspray (Seaweed J. Stubbs, Marriott Lincolnshire Theatre), Tales of the City (Jon, Eugene O’Neil Theatre Center), Smokey Joe’s Café (Ken, Cape Playhouse), High School Musical 2 (Chad, North Carolina Theatre), Memphis (u/s Gator, Bobby, La Jolla Playhouse/5th Avenue Theatre), Dreamgirls (C.C. White, North Carolina Theatre). Film: Finding Me: Truth. BFA: University of Cincinnati (CCM).

DERRICK COBEY (Andy Wright) created this role in The Scottsboro Boys at the Vineyard and Guthrie Theaters.  He was recently seen in The Tin Pan Alley Rag (Roundabout); G&S Canon (City Center). National tours include Rent and Forever Swing. Regional credits: Into the Woods, Little Shop of Horrors and Macbeth (Great Lakes Theater Festival/ Idaho Shakespeare Festival);  Abyssinia (Goodspeed), Jesus Christ Superstar (North Shore); Ragtime (Paper Mill Playhouse); Hair (Hangar Theater); Side Show (Cleveland Playhouse); The Buddy Holly Story (Westchester Broadway); Pacific Overtures (Arden Theatre); Oklahoma!, Brigadoon, Ragtime, Jesus Christ Superstar, Damn Yankees, Wizard of Oz and Footloose (Sacramento Music Circus);  A Little Night Music, Once on this Island (Connecticut Repertory); Smokey Joe’s Café (Actors Playhouse).

COLMAN DOMINGO (Mr. Bones) created this role in The Scottsboro Boys at the Vineyard and Guthrie Theaters.  Broadway: Chicago, Passing Strange, Well. Off-Broadway: A Boy and His Soul (Vineyard), The Wiz (City Center), Passing Strange and Henry V (NYSF/Public), and Bright Ideas (MCC). Regional: Coming Home (Long Wharf), People’s Temple (Guthrie/ Berkeley Rep), Well and Journey to the West (Huntington), The Lily’s Revenge (Sundance). Film: Passing Strange, Miracle at St. Ana, King of the Bingo Game, Freedomland, Kung Phooey, Around the Fire and True Crime. Television: “Law and Order: Criminal Intent,” “Law and Order: Trial By Jury,” “Law and Order” and “Nash Bridges”.  Awards: OBIE, Connecticut Critics Circle and Bay Area Theater Critics Circle. GLAAD Nominee.

JOSHUA HENRY (Haywood Patterson) Member of Jaradoa Theater Company and AEA.  Last seen in American Idiot and In the Heights on Broadway and The Wiz at City Center. Regional: American Idiot at Berkeley Rep Theatre, Godspell at Paper Mill Playhouse. Off-Broadway: In the Heights. Film and TV: Sex and the City (movie) and “Kings.” Thanks to Station 3 Entertainment.

RODNEY HICKS (Clarence Norris) created this role in The Scottsboro Boys at the Vineyard and Guthrie Theaters.  Broadway: Rent (Benny, Closing Cast), Jesus Christ Superstar (Peter), Rent (Original Cast). Off-Broadway: Jacques Brel is Alive and Well … (2006 Cast Recording), From My Hometown (Audelco Award Nomination), Rent (Obie Award), Lotto (Audelco Award). Regional: White Noise (Tyler, World Premiere), Miss Saigon (John, Pioneer Theatre), Noah’s Great Rainbow (Murigande, Toronto), King Lear (Edmund, Denver Center), Ain’t Misbehavin’ (Andre, Maltz Jupiter), The 60’s Project (Roy, World Premiere), Two Gentlemen of Verona (Valentine, Centre Stage), Lobby Hero (William, Geva), Golden Boy (Joe, Long Wharf). Film: Rent: Filmed Live on Broadway, Bad Decisions, Django. TV: “Hope & Faith”, “Law & Order: Criminal Intent”, “Student Affairs”, “NYPD Blue”.

KENDRICK JONES (Willie Roberson) created this role in The Scottsboro Boys at the Vineyard and Guthrie Theaters.  Off-Broadway: Stairway to Paradise (City Center Encores!). Regional: Bubblin’ Brown Sugar (Fox Theatre, Atlanta). Other theatre credits include Looking for Josephine (Opera Comique, Paris), Barack on Broadway (New Amsterdam Theatre), Broadway By the Year and All Singin’ All Dancin’ (Town Hall NYC). Trained at NYU Tisch School’s ETW. www.myspace.com/TAPKID257.

FORREST McCLENDON (Mr. Tambo) created this role in The Scottsboro Boys at the Vineyard and Guthrie Theaters.   Off-Broadway: James Baldwin: A Soul on Fire (New Federal Theatre, Audelco Award Nomination).  Regional: Avenue X (11th Hour Theatre Company, Barrymore Award), Sizwe Bansi is Dead (Lantern Theatre Company), The Threepenny Opera (Wilma Theater, Barrymore Award Nomination), The America Play (Zachary Scott Theatre, Central Texas Critics Table Award), Julius Caesar (People’s Light and Theatre Company), A Christmas Carol (Westport Country Playhouse), Dreamgirls (Prince Music Theater), Finian’s Rainbow (Walnut Street Theatre).  Trained at the University of Connecticut.

JULIUS THOMAS III (Roy Wright) created this role in The Scottsboro Boys at the Vineyard and Guthrie Theaters.  National Tours: Xanadu (Terpsicore/Young Danny, 1st Nat’l), 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (Mitch/Chip/Panch U/S, 1st Nat’l), Radio City Christmas Spectacular (Soloist, Arena Tour). NYC Theatre: Bonnie & Clyde (Buford, NYMF), Dial ‘N’ for Negress (Antonio, Theatre Row). Regional Theatre: Aida (Mereb, Lyric Theatre, OK), Dreamgirls (C.C. White, WVPT), Five Guys Named Moe (No Moe/Lil’ Moe, Lyric Theatre, OK), Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (Calypso Brother, Music Theatre Wichita). BFA from Wichita State University. www.JuliusThomas3.com.

(The Lady) created this role in The Scottsboro Boys at the Vineyard and Guthrie Theaters.  Off-Broadway: The Overwhelming (Roundabout), House and Garden, The Radical Mystique (Manhattan Theatre Club), Stuff Happens, Richard III (NYSF/Public Theater), String of Pearls (Primary Stages). Regional: Merry Wives of Windsor, King Lear (Denver Center), Intimate Apparel (Guthrie), Jar the Floor (Seattle Rep), The Story, Cermonies in Dark Old Men (Long Wharf), Man and Superman (Center Stage), Miss Evers’ Boys (Philadelphia Theatre Company), The Piano Lesson (Yale Rep). Film: Rocksteady (2010), Michael Clayton, School of Rock, The Long Kiss Goodnight, Die Hard With A Vengeance. TV: “Taking Chance”, “Damages”, “Royal Pains”, “Law & Order”, “Law & Order: SVU”, “Law & Order: CI”.

CHRISTIAN DANTE WHITE (Charles Weems, Victoria Price) created this role in The Scottsboro Boys at the Vineyard and Guthrie Theaters.  Praise be to God! Favorite roles: The Wiz starring Ashanti (Scarecrow, City Center Summer Stars), Jersey Boys (Barry Belson, Vegas), Hairspray (Seaweed J. Stubbs, Tour and The Muny). Reading: The Scottsboro Boys.

JOHN KANDER and FRED EBB (Music and Lyrics) The John Kander and Fred Ebb collaboration of four decades has created what many would consider Broadway standards and contemporary classics.  One of their first collaborations became a hit song for Barbra Streisand, “My Coloring Book,” earning John and Fred a Grammy nomination.  In 1965, the pair worked on their first Broadway show, Flora, the Red Menace, produced by Hal Prince and directed by George Abbott.  Flora also introduced a rising new star, Liza Minnelli. Followed by: Cabaret (Tony Award music and lyrics), The Happy Time, Zorba, 70, Girls, 70, Chicago, The Act, Woman of the Year (Tony Award, music and lyrics), The Rink, Kiss of the Spider Woman (Tony Award, music and lyrics) and Steel Pier.   Their collaboration also transferred itself to movies and television as they wrote original material for the Academy Awards, “Liza with a Z” and HBO’s “Liza Minnelli’s Steppin’ Out” (Both Emmy winners), “Baryshnikov on Broadway”, “Goldie and Liza Together,” “Funny Lady,” “Lucky Lady,” “New York, New York,” “Steppin Out,” and “Chicago,”, the movie.  In 1985, the song “New York, New York” became the official anthem of New York City.  At the time of the unfortunate death of Mr. Ebb, Kander and Ebb had several projects in different stages of completion waiting in the wings, Tony nominated Curtains, which played at the Al Hirschfeld Theater on Broadway in 2007, All About Us (an adaptation of Thornton Wilder’s The Skin of our Teeth) The Visit, which had a successful run at the Goodman Theater in Chicago and the Signature Theatre in Fairfax, VA starring Chita Rivera and The Scottsboro Boys.  Life goes on.

DAVID THOMPSON (Book) Broadway: Steel Pier (Tony Nomination, Best Book), script adaptation for current revival of Chicago (Tony Award, Best Musical Revival), Lincoln Center’s Thou Shalt Not.  Off-Broadway: And the World Goes ‘Round (New York Drama Desk and Outer Critics’ Awards), new book for the revival of Flora the Red Menace (Drama Desk Nomination, Best Revival). Regional:  McCarter Theater’s A Christmas Carol (now in its twentieth year.)  Television:  “Sondheim – A Celebration at Carnegie Hall” (Emmy Nomination), PBS specials “Razzle Dazzle,” “Bernstein on Broadway,” “Jerry Herman and the Pops,” “The Music of Richard Rogers” and Great Performances’ “My Favorite Broadway.”  Education:  Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism.

Susan Stroman (Direction/Choreography) This marks Susan’s fourth collaboration with John Kander and David Thompson. A five-time Tony Award-winning director and choreographer, her work has been honored with Olivier, Drama Desk, Outer Critics, Lucille Lortel, and Astaire Awards. She directed and choreographed The Producers, winner of a record-making 12 Tony Awards including Best Direction and Best Choreography. She co-created, directed and choreographed the Tony Award-winning musical Contact for Lincoln Center Theater, which was honored with a 2003 Emmy Award for Live at Lincoln Center. Other Broadway credits include Crazy for You, Show Boat, Oklahoma!, Young Frankenstein, The Frogs, The Music Man, Thou Shalt Not, Steel Pier, Big, Picnic. Off-Broadway credits include Happiness for Lincoln Center Theater, Flora the Red Menace, And The World Goes ‘Round. For 10 years she choreographed Madison Square Garden’s annual spectacular A Christmas Carol, directed by Mike Ockrent. New York City Opera credits include A Little Night Music, 110 in the Shade and Don Giovanni. She created Double Feature, a full-length ballet for New York City Ballet featuring the music of Irving Berlin and Walter Donaldson. She also created the ballets Blossom Got Kissed for New York City Ballet’s 50th Anniversary season, But Not For Me for the Martha Graham Company, and Take Five…More or Less for Pacific Northwest Ballet. Her choreography received an Emmy nomination for the HBO presentation Liza – Live from Radio City Music Hall, starring Liza Minnelli. Other TV credits include co-conceiver/choreographer for PBS’s “Sondheim – a Celebration at Carnegie Hall,” “An Evening with the Boston Pops – A Tribute to Leonard Bernstein” and the “2009 Kennedy Center Honors”. She received the American Choreography Award for her work in Columbia Pictures feature film Center Stage. She directed and choreographed The Producers: The Movie Musical, nominated for 4 Golden Globes. January 2011 will see the premiere of a new work for New York City Ballet. Susan is the recipient of the George Abbott Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Theater.

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