Keke Palmer Will Become Broadway’s First Black Cinderella - Zinny's Blog
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Keke Palmer Will Become Broadway’s First Black Cinderella

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Today we learn that a new actress will be taking on the role starting next month. Keke Palmer, who did an excellent job playing RozondaChilli Thomas in that TLC made-for-tv biopic movie, has just been announced as the new Cinderella starting September 9. Keke‘s casting is significant because she is the first Black actress to ever play the role on Broadway.
ABC news have the inner scoop:

Like many girls, actress and singer Keke Palmer grew up dreaming of meeting a prince who would whisk her away to a life of love and happiness. In her case, it’s going to happen — eight shows a week on Broadway.

Palmer said she’ll be stepping into the title role in “Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella” starting Sept. 9 at the Broadway Theatre. She will become the first African-American to play the part on the Great White Way.

“It’s honestly one of those things that I can’t believe is really happening,” Palmer said by phone Friday from her Los Angeles home. “I’m very excited. Very excited and nervous as well — a bunch of feelings all at once.” Palmer, 21, is stepping into the sparkly shoes first worn by Tony-nominated Laura Osnes, then put on by “Call Me Maybe” Canadian pop star Carly Rae Jepsen and currently worn by Paige Faure, who launches a national tour in the title role this fall. Palmer, who will be making her professional stage debut, will rely on a host of skills she’s developed from film — including “Barbershop 2: Back in Business” and “Akeelah and the Bee” — her BET talk show, “Just Keke,” and on TV in Showtime’s “Masters of Sex.” Her albums include the 2007 CD “So Uncool” and a self-titled 2012 EP. She has played Chili in “CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story” and starred in Nickelodeon’s “True Jackson, VP.” Palmer also appeared opposite Cicely Tyson and Vanessa Williams in Lifetime’s “A Trip to Bountiful,” which was nominated for an Emmy Award. “She acts beautifully, she dances, she sings — she’s an amazing young woman,” Tony Award-winning producer Robyn Goodman said. “I think she’s going to be just so lovely” … “Theater offers so much more than I haven’t been able to access doing film and TV and everything like that,” she said. “I’m very excited to learn all that it has to offer — that focus and that dedication to perform at a certain level every night” … The producers of “Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella” have always been colorblind about casting the show, which Actors Equity honored for excellence in diversity on Broadway last year. “We’ve always just cast the best people for the parts. Sometimes they’re African-American, sometimes they’re Latino, sometimes Asian-American,” Goodman said. “It’s wonderful when it works out and we’ve finally found our Cinderella.” The traditional fairy tale has been given a sly and witty makeover by Douglas Carter Beane, who updated the story for a new generation. The songs by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II include “In My Own Little Corner,” ”Impossible/It’s Possible” and “Do I Love You Because You’re Beautiful?” “Every girl’s dream is that story so to be able to play is going to be a dream come true for me. Not to mention that Stuart Weitzman made the glass slippers I’ll be wearing,” Palmer said, laughing.


Keke will become the first Black actress to play Cinderella on Broadway, she’s not the first Black actress to play the role ever. You may recall that Brandy played Cinderella (with Whitney Houston as her fairy godmother) back in 1997 in a made-for-TV movie. But, playing the lead role of any character in any Broadway show.

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