Fantasia, we had a hunch! The Grammy winner and American Idol champ will return to the stage in the upcoming Broadway production of After Midnight, in which she’ll be the first in a rotating roster of guest star headliners who will join the show throughout its run. Fantasia will perform from the beginning of previews on October 18 through February 9, 2014, and she will be the headliner when the show has its official opening on November 3.
Fantasia catapulted to fame in 2004 as the winner of American Idol, defeating Broadway vet Diana DeGarmo for the title. Her debut album, Free Yourself, received four Grammy nominations and was followed by a second self-titled release. Fantasia made her Broadway debut in April 2007 when she took over the role of Celie in The Color Purple, receiving a Broadway.com Audience Choice Award and Theatre World Award for her performance. She later toured with the show. She won a 2011 Grammy Award for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance for “Bittersweet,” the lead single from her third solo album, Back to Me. Fantasia also headlined her own VH1 reality series, Fantasia for Real. She released her fourth studio album Side Effects of You in April.
Conceived by Jack Viertel, After Midnight is an evocative new musical that tackles the sexy, smoky glamour of the Jazz Age, set in the heyday of Duke Ellington’s years at Harlem’s Cotton Club. The ever-changing list of stars is reflective of the Cotton Club’s weekly rotation of guests during its “Celebrity Nights,” which included the likes of Lena Horne, Judy Garland, George Gershwin, Billie Holiday and Ella Fitzgerald.
After Midnight will feature 25 vocalists and dancers, 17 big-band musicians (hand-picked by jazz legend Wynton Marsalis, who serves as musical director) and a narrative comprised of Langston Hughes poetry.
Warren Carlyle directs and choreographs After Midnight, which is itself a new production of Cotton Club Parade, the smash musical that played two sold-out engagements at New York City Center. The creative team includes Isabel Toledo (costumes) and Ruben Toledo, John lee Beatty (set design), Howell Binkley (lighting design), Peter Hylenski (sound design) and Daryl Waters (musical supervision). Complete casting and musicians will be announced shortly.