The national tour of Fela! just got a little more bootylicious. Grammy winner Michelle Williams, formerly of Destiny’s Child, will play Sandra in the national tour of the Tony-nominated musical beginning January 29 in Washington, D.C. The tour will go on to play 16 cities in 2013, including Miami and Seattle.
Best known for her work in the chart-topping pop group Destiny’s Child, Williams made her Broadway debut in the title role in Aida in 2003. She hit the road in 2007, playing Shug Avery in the national tour of The Color Purple. In 2009, Williams made her West End debut as the first African American actress to play Roxie Hart in Chicago, a role that she reprised on Broadway in 2010. She has also toured in What My Husband Doesn’t Know, which is currently showing on BET. She has also released three solo albums.
Fela! tells the story of iconic Nigerian musician Fela Anikulapo Kuti and his life as an artist, political activist and revolutionary musician. In addition to forming a political party and running for president several times, Kuti created the enormously influential style of music known as “Afrobeat,” which blended jazz, funk and African rhythms and harmonies.
In addition to Williams, the show stars Adesola Osakalumi as Fela and Melanie Marshall as his mother Funmilayo.
Fela! was conceived, choreographed and directed by Tony winner Bill T. Jones. The musical originally opened at Broadway's Eugene O’Neill Theatre in November 2009, and was nominated for 11 Tony Awards including Best Musical.