Fantasia Barrino took to The Oprah Winfrey Show on February 3, 2010 to discuss her Broadway run in The Color Purple, which came under scrutiny at the time due to a reported 60 missed performances. Barrino now blames her weak attendance record on two tumors that developed on her vocal cord during the run: "If I wasn't on the stage, I was in the hospital getting an I.V."
Winfrey, a well-publicized producer of The Color Purple, appeared surprised by Barrino's revelation, asking, "Why didn't you tell me?"
"I couldn't find you!" Barrino responded, adding that other producers were aware of her hospital visits and pushed her to perform for audiences.
"I had never done a Broadway play," Barrino continued. "I wasn't really prepared for what all comes with it. That's a lot on Broadway--eight shows a week… I would get very tired, not enough sleep. I was pushing myself."
A replacement in the leading role of Celie, Barrino appeared in The Color Purple from April 10, 2007 to January 6, 2008, earning rave reviews for her performance and boosting box office receipts during the run. She was also honored with a Theatre World Award, presented to stage newcomers.
Barrino also spoke about her financial troubles, and her strained relationship with family members that she supported after winning American Idol. She added that the vocal cord tumors were successfully removed following her run on Broadway.
Barrino has a new VH1 reality show that airs Mondays at 10pm, Fantasia: For Real. She is also currently promoting a single titled "Even Angels," which she sang during her appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show.