25 Next Generation Broadway Divas Singing Their Absolute Faces Off
September 26th, 2017
by Josh Ferri
Let’s talk turkey: these ladies have got next level voices and we’re going to be listening to them for years to come. The only criteria to make the cut is crazy-good talent and you can’t have had the final bow in a Broadway musical. (Sorry Lindsay, Betsy, Cynthia, Laura, Sierra, Jessie, Ariana, etc, etc!)
Samantha Massell Sings “But the World Goes Round”
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: I never thought I’d like anyone other than Liza but Fiddler on the Roof and upcoming Rags star OWNS this—like the way Patti now owns “Ladies Who Lunch” owns it. Just get ready for 2:54.
Samantha Marie Ware Performs “Colored Woman” from Memphis
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: I’ve long been obsessed with this former Glee and Hamilton star’s killer voice (and that Aida clip!). Listen to her slay this big Memphis moment from 2:02-2:30 like it’s NBD. W.T.F.
Tiffany Mann Performs “Saved” from Smokey Joe’s Café
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: You might remember Tiffany from her viral Dreamgirls video but now she’s all grown and she needs to be on B’way. This is pure church! I’m a convert and you will be too. Picking one part to highlight was tough, but try 1:36-2:17.
Eva Noblezada & Rachelle Ann Go Perform “The Movie in My Mind” from Miss Saigon
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: There’s a good chance these ladies are going back to London and we won’t see them for a hot minute and that’s a true heartbreak ‘cause no one sings like them. I could write a college dissertation about everything that happens in Rachelle’s moment at 1:40-2:12. Then at 3:26, Eva the Diva proves she’s not here to play, she’s here to slay. (Also, I know what you're thinking and technically The Engineer and Tam bow after Kim…)
Joanna Jones Performs “Lot’s Wife” from Caroline, or Change
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: Joanna makes her deut as Peggy/Maria in Broadway’s Hamilton, and she has a one sick, soulful voice. I legit lost my breath during this performance. There are gorgeous, rich low notes in the beginning but then that “slam down the iron/flat” moment at 3:15! I full-out applauded at the end…at my desk.
Alysha Umphress Performs “Cornet Man” from Funny Girl
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: Choosing one Alysha video for me was like choosing a favorite Golden Girl, practically impossible. The whole thing is a praise hand, but esp. all the growls and flair after 1:57.
Marisha Wallace Performs “And I’m Telling You” from Dreamgirls
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: The West End’s newest star brings this iconic song to the next level. I hope New York audiences see her in the transfer. Let’s just talk about what she does once he leaves and she’s alone beginning at 2:13.
Emma Hunton Performs “Science Fiction Double Feature” from The Rocky Horror Show
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: I never thought I’d hear a better Rocky Horror than the last B’way revival but when Emma got to 1:03 my jaw legit dropped and I nearly welled up. Then at 2:30, she became my new queen.
Trista Dollison Sings “It’s Raining Men”
Rebecca Naomi Jones Performs “Love’s a Gun” from Love’s Labour’s Lost
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: Total star with such a distinct voice and she sells a lyric like Bernadette Peters. Just the beauty of 1:35—the whole “love’s a play” section kills me.
Jessica Keenan Wynn Performs “Woman in the Moon” from A Star Is Born
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: The Beautiful, Heathers, and soon-to-be Mamma Mia! sequel star is the real deal. She owns this song—get ready for around 2:20.
Molly Pope Performs “Now You Know/Not a Day Goes By” from Merrily We Roll Along
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: The acclaimed NY cabaret staple needs a big break ‘cause this talent is truly singular. Who else on this list sounds like this? No one.
Arielle Jacobs Performs “How Far I’ll Go” from Moana
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: The Wicked and Aladdin star brings such a joy and warmth to this Lin-Manuel song. Then she totally soars at 2:25.
DeLaney Westfall Performs “Love You I Do” from Dreamgirls
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: The current Kinky Boots star serves superhuman vocals taking on Ms. JHud like that. Grab onto something sturdy for 1:34-2:06.
Alexandra Silber Performs “Vanilla Ice Cream” from She Loves Me
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: The song just sounds perfect in her voice, and the former Fiddler star had me grinning from ear to ear during the comedy bit at 1:25. Also, come on with those end notes from 2:55 on.
Ashley Park & Taylor Louderman Sing “Poker Face”
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: Both of these ladies are gearing up for major moments (and some nominations) this season as Gretchen and Regina in Mean Girls. Hello, 1:40.
Bryonha Marie Parham Sings “Feed Me” from Little Shop of Horrors
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: The Prince of Broadway standout is this fall’s big obsession and hearing her do Audrey II left me dead. Wish there was video, but listen to 3:32, so worth it. She’s so fierce.
Barrett Wilbert Weed Sings “If It Makes You Happy”
Patrice Covington Sings “All At Once”
Nicole Vanessa Ortiz Sings “Maybe”
Charissa Hogeland Performs “Everybody’s Free” from For the Record: Baz Luhrmann 3.0
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: I must say I was not familiar with the Kinky Boots and Heathers star but DAMN! I’m VP of the fan club after 1:30-1:58!
Nicolette Robinson Performs “To Model” from Bright Lights, Big City
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: It’s crazy to me this insane talent has not been on Broadway yet (and she has a full soprano happening in that big voice too)! I fell in love with her talent at this concert—how could you not from 2:15-3:00.
Nasia Thomas Performs “Ain’t Nothing But a Kiss” from Memphis
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: It’s a 40-second video and the former Beautiful star sings her face off—just watch the whole thing.
Molly Hager Sings “Broadway, Here I Come!”
Amber Iman Sings “Freedom"
Ultimate 🙌 🙌 moment: I’m obsessed with this Hamilton, Shuffle Along and Soul Doctor star, and her singing Beyonce at 4:22-4:53 has put me on the fall for the day. Goodbye.