Black History Month Dreamcast: An All-Black Revival of La Cage Aux Folles

Last updated February 8th, 2021 by BroadwayBox Staff
Black History Month Dreamcast: An All-Black Revival of La C…

Photo by Emilio Madrid

Continuing our Black History Month Dreamcast Series for 2021, BroadwayBox is shining a spotlight on the immensely talented African American artists working in musical theatre by reimagining four more revivals in the tradition of Pearl Bailey's Hello, Dolly!

In November 1967, producer David Merrick opened an all-black production of Jerry Herman’s Hello, Dolly! starring Pearl Bailey as Dolly and Cab Calloway as Horace. The musical received rave reviews and Pearl Bailey was awarded a special Tony Award for her performance as Dolly—they even released a cast recording with the new company.

In most big revivals on Broadway, potentially one principal character is played by a black actor, but these dream revivals feature casts of black Tony Award winners, nominees, and breakout stars.

Next in our dreamcast series, we look at another Jerry Herman musical which in 1984 won 6 Tony Awards - the spectacular La Cage aux Folles.

Albin: Billy Porter

In our lifetime, we would love so much to see this revival happen for this casting alone. The marvelous Tony, Grammy, and Emmy Award winner would bring the house down with a powerful "I Am What I Am." We know it would be beautifully acted. We know it would be incredibly sung. Please please please.

Georges: Norm Lewis

How phenomenal is Norm? We get goosebumps everytime we hear him sing this song. Opposite Billy, his "Song on the Sand" would be so gorgeous and especially his "Look Over There."

Jean-Michel: Leslie Odom, Jr.

There is magic in Leslie's voice. With family like Billy and Norm as Albin and Georges, a supreme talent like Leslie is perfect for Jean-Michel who dreams of marrying his love Anne - who is played by none other than...

Anne: Nicolette Robinson

The ever sweet Anne is head over heels for her love Jean-Michel. We love the idea of this real life couple playing opposite each other. Nicolette would be a dream.

Edouard Dindon: Brian Stokes Mitchell

When we said dreamcast, we meant dreamcast. Already, this cast is full of superstars and Brian Stokes Mitchell is another in this constellation. Brian would be stepping into Anne's more conservative father's shoes.

Madame Dindon: Kenita R. Miller

Oh, how we adore Kenita! She has experience playing a mama to Ti Moune as Mama Euralie in the amazing Once on this Island revival. She would be a lot of fun opposite Stokes.

Jacob: J. Harrison Ghee

For Jacob, we thought of the fantastic triple threat J. Harrison Ghee of Mrs. Doubtfire. The scene stealing moments that could happen within Georges and Albin's house with the arrival of the Dindons!? Yes, yes, yes.

Jacqueline: Adriane Lenox

The grand dame who owns Chez Jacqueline in our story and leads the show's signature song "The Best Of Times" - one name comes to mind. The remarkable Adriane Lenox. Acclaimed for her work in plays (Doubt) and musicals (After Midnight), her glorious presence in this dreamcast revival completes the cast.