American Idol season six finalist Sanjaya Malakar will make his New York stage debut in the off-Broadway family musical Freckleface Strawberry, beginning February 23. The show opened on October 1, 2010, at New World Stages, directed by Buddy Crutchfield.
Malakar will join a company that currently features Spring Awakening alum Remy Zaken in the title role alongside Julia Bray, Andrew Cristi, Linda Gabler, Kimiko Glenn and Mykal Kilgore. Based on the children’s book by Julianne Moore, Freckleface Strawberry features a score by Gary Kupper and book by Kupper and Rose Caiola.
Sanjaya became one of American Idol’s most memorable contestants during the show’s 2006 season, won by In the Heights vet Jordin Sparks. His flowing hair and enormous smile made him a fan favorite even as he attracted jibes from judge Simon Cowell. After finishing seventh and touring with other American Idol finalists, Malakar wrote a book, Dancing in the Music in My Head, released an EP and appeared on the reality series I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!