Official: Leslie Uggams to Star as 'Mama Rose' in Connecticut Rep's GYPSY This Summer
Artistic Director Vincent J. Cardinal has announced that Leslie Uggams, the Tony and Emmy Award winning actress will be starring as Rose in Connecticut Repertory Theatre's (CRT) production of GYPSY: A Musical Fable onstage July 10-20. GYPSY, is the third show in the 2014 Summer Nutmeg Series, which includes A CHORUS LINE (June 5-14) and THE SUNSHINE BOYS (June 19-29) starring Jerry Adler and Richard Kline.
Leslie Uggams, a star of the stage and screen for six decades, is perhaps best known as a Tony award winning Broadway actress and for her stirring portrayal of Kizzy in the landmark TV mini-series Alex Haley's Roots, where she received a Critics Choice Award and Emmy and Golden Globe nominations. Ms. Uggams recently starred in the Broadway-bound world premiere of Stormy Weather: The Lena Horne Story (Ovation nomination) at the Pasadena Playhouse in California. On Broadway, Ms. Uggams mader her musical theatre debut starring in Hallelujah, Baby! earning both Tony and World Theatre awards. Her Broadway credits include Blues in the Night, Jerry's Girls, Anything Goes, King Headley II (Tony Award nomination), Thoroughly Modern Millie and On Golden Pond opposite James Earl Jones.
Ms. Uggams television career began at the age of six, portraying Ethel Waters' niece on the TV series Beulah. As a teenager she became the first African American performer to be featured on a weekly national primetime series as a regular on Sing Along with Mitch. In 1970 she hosted her own primetime variety series The Leslie Uggams Show. A Julliard graduate, Ms. Uggams has performed to critical and popular acclaim ever since her first professional appearances at the age of nine at the famed Apollo Theater, opening for musical legends such as Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald and Dinah Washington. As a singer,
Artistic Director Vincent J. Cardinal said "We are honored and thrilled to have an artist of this talent and magnitude joining us at CRT, to play this challenging and iconic role."
Gypsy: A Musical Fable by Arthur Laurents is one of the great masterpieces of musical theatre. Soaring with Jule Styne's melodies and Stephen Sondheim's lyrics, GYPSY is based on the memoirs of the famous striptease artist Gypsy Rose Lee, and tells the story of Rose, the ultimate stage mother, and her dream to raise her daughters to become stars and thus gain fulfillment for her own failed venture into show business. In real life, Louise became Gypsy Rose Lee and Baby June, movie star June Havoc. Mama Rose has become arguably the greatest female role in musical theatre due to its emotion, complexity and powerful songs.
Evening performances start at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, and at 8 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. Matinee performances start at 2 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. Subscription package options range from $30 to $93. Single ticket prices range from $10 to 43. Call 860.486.2113 for tickets and additional information. Please call the box office or visit www.crt.uconn.edu for specific show dates and times because performance schedules vary and are subject to change. The Harriet S. Jorgensen Theatre is located on the campus of the University of Connecticut in Storrs and offers air-conditioned comfort and convenient free parking.