hehe…Majestic…see what I did there….like…the theater?
But seriously, this is the greatest casting news ever. Not only is the beautiful songstress Sierra Boggess returning to role of Christine in The Phantom of the Opera on Broadway, but the one and only NORM LEWIS will be joining her as the Phantom!
Broadway.com reported the news Thursday afternoon, and Twitter exploded with excitement and congratulations. While Boggess will be reprising her role she has portrayed on Broadway for the 25th Anniversary as well as the Royal Albert Hall, Las Vegas and London productions and the West End production of Love Never Dies, Lewis is making history as the first African-American actor to portray the iconic role on Broadway.
Lewis, a Tony-nominee, mentioned it has been a dream role of his for a long time, and it follows in a long line of impressive performances including his show-stopping role in Porgy and Bess opposite Audra McDonald and arguably his most well-known appearance as Javert in the 25th Anniversary concert of Les Misérables.
Both actors begin performances on May 12, and it can’t come any sooner. Seeing two actors with such promise (we have video evidence of Boggess’ perfected version of the role) and such chemistry share the stage will be quite a treat for Broadway audiences.
Sure, the fact that they’ve played father and daughter opposite each other (Ariel and King Triton in The Little Mermaid) presents a bit of an acting challenge, but my girl Sierra, rightly dubbed by Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber as the “best Christine” and the vocal powerhouse that is Norm are definitely up for it.
Tony Award-winner Lin Manuel-Miranda had the greatest reaction to the news, tweeting lyric mashups of songs from Phantom and The Little Mermaid with the hashtag #PhantomMermaid, which was one of the greatest things I’ve ever seen on Twitter.
In additionally awesome casting news, Manuel-Miranda will also be starring in the City Center Encores! production of Jonathan Larson’s tick..tick…Boom opposite Tony-Award Winner and In the Heights costar Karen Olivo.
Talk about two fantastic pairings! March has certainly been a month of major announcements for the theater world, and 2014 looks to be one of the best years for theater yet!