Phoenix Best, Ta'Nika Gibson and Zonya Love to Star in All-New DREAMGIRLS at TUTS; Cast Announced!

Phoenix Best, Ta'Nika Gibson and Zonya Love to Star in All-New DREAMGIRLS at TUTS; Cast Announced!Theatre Under The Stars is excited to introduce the cast for its upcoming production of DREAMGIRLS.

Speaking about the cast of DREAMGIRLS, TUTS Artistic Advisor and Director of the production, Sheldon Epps says, "A careful and exhaustive series of auditions in three cities has led us to this superlative company of triple threats. The cast is deeply gifted in every way. I know that they will generously give their artistry to this very special show in vivacious performances that will give this material a vibrant and exciting new life."

In the role of Deena Jones is Phoenix Best; Ta'Nika Gibson will play the role of Lorrell Robinson; and, Zonya Love will be joining the cast in the role of Effie White. Best's recent credits include THE COLOR PURPLE on Broadway, as well as, regional productions of LES MISERABLES (PA Shakespeare Festival), CINDERELLA (PA Shakespeare Festival), and BEAUTY AND THE BEAST (PA Shakespeare Festival). Gibson has a vast number of regional theatre credits including productions of THE WIZ (Weathervane Rep. Theatre), AIDA (Strand Theater), and ANYTHING GOES (MacDuffie Theater). Love has appeared on Broadway as Celie in 2008 production of THE COLOR PURPLE, Off-Broadway and in the National Tour of AVENUE Q, in the television show, "Blue Bloods", and in numerous regional theatre productions including THE WIZ (Maltz Jupiter Theatre), THE COLOR PURPLE (Milwaukee Rep) and KISS ME, KATE (Shakespeare Theatre Company).

Kerrisa Arrington, who TUTS audiences may recognize from the 2016 production of THE SWEET POTATO QUEENS, will be playing the role of Michelle Morris. Her other theatrical credits include the National Tour of SISTER ACT and regional productions of RENT (The Woodlawn Theatre) and HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL (The Woodlawn Theatre). E. Clayton Cornelious joins the cast as Jimmy "Thunder" Early. His Broadway credits include the original productions of BEAUTIFUL: THE Carole King MUSICAL, WONDERLAND and THE SCOTTSBORO BOYS, as well as, revivals of A CHORUS LINE and THE MUSIC MAN.

Thomas Hobson will be playing the role of Curtis Taylor, Jr. He has an extensive number of film, television and theatre credits including "NCIS: Los Angeles", "Criminal Minds", Follow, SMOKEY JOE'S CAFE (Pasadena Playhouse), AIN'T NO MOUNTAIN HIGH ENOUGH (Center Theatre Group), and DREAMGIRLS (San Diego Music Theatre). Wonza Johnson, who recently appeared in the TUTS production of HOW TO SUCCEED IN BUSINESS WITHOUT REALLY TRYING, will be playing the role of C.C. White. He has appeared in numerous regional productions including AIDA (The MUNY), MAMMA MIA! (The MUNY), WESTSIDE STORY (Musical Theater Wichita), and 42ND STREET (Musical Theater Wichita). Jacques C. Smith, whose Broadway credits include the original cast of RENT and who was recently in the National Tour of IF/THEN, will be playing the role of Marty.

Rounding out the cast in the ensemble are Courtney Blackburn, Natalie Kaye Clater, Tiffany Adeline Cole, Kevin Curtis, Sheldon Henry, April Holloway, Sheila Jones, Logan Keslar, Travis Patton, Armando Reinaldo, Terrance Spencer, and Borris York.

Blackburn has appeared in a number of regional theatre productions including MEMPHIS (Arkansas Rep), 9 TO 5 (Broward Stage Door Theatre), LES MISERABLES (Cortland Rep), A CHORUS LINE (Boiler Room Theatre) and OKLAHOMA! (Leslie Milstead). Clater, who is also serving as the Dance Captain for this production of DREAMGIRLS, has appeared in a variety of regional theatre productions including GREASE (The MUNY), WEST SIDE STORY (The MUNY), HAIRSPRAY (Porch Productions) and PETER PAN (Carolina Broadway Theatre Co.). Cole's theatrical credits include regional productions of THE LAST DAYS OF JUDAS ISCARIOT (Stages Theater) and A PIECE OF MY HEART (Grand Central Theater), and has also served as choreographer on many productions including THE ROCKY HORROR SHOW (The Space Theater) and VIOLET (Grand Central Theater).

Curtis appeared in the 2008 National Tour of A CHORUS LINE and has appeared in productions of INVISIBLE THREAD (Second Stage - directed by Diane Paulus), SWEENEY TODD (Denver Center) and HAIRSPRAY (PCLO). Henry has appeared in the National Tours of SOUTH PACIFIC and RIVERDANCE, and in many regional theatre productions including SCOTTSBORO BOYS (Speak Easy Stage Company), GUYS AND DOLLS (WestChester Broadway Theatre) and SHOW BOAT (Fiddlehead Theatre). Holloway's theatrical credits include RADIO CITY CHRISTMAS SPECTACULAR (New York and the National Tour), MEMPHIS (Walnut Street Theatre), JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT (Maltz Jupiter Theatre) and THE MUSIC MAN (Flatrock Playhouse). Jones previous work includes roles in productions of RAGTIME (Lees McRae Summer Theatre), OKLAHOMA! (Portland Center Stage), CATS (Theatre Winter Haven) and THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE (Fallon Theatre). Keslar, who was recently in TUTS' productions of INTO THE WOODS and HOW TO SUCCEED... has also been seen on Broadway in the Tony-award-winning revival of LA CAGE AUX FOLLES.

Patton appeared in the National and International tours of FOSSE and has a variety of regional theatre credits including CHICAGO (Woodminster Theater), PIPPIN (Palace Theater), A CHORUS LINE (Palace Theater) and THE WIZ (Laguna Creek Playhouse). Reinaldo's work includes the television show, "The Real O'Neals" and theatrical productions such as the second National Tour of IN THE HEIGHTS, the 2013/14 International Tour of WEST SIDE STORY and TWIST AN AMERICAN MUSICAL, which was directed by Debbie Allen. Spencer has appeared on Broadway and the National Tour of WICKED, and has also appeared in a number of regional theatre productions such as KISS ME KATE (Pasadena Playhouse), ALADDIN (The Hyperion Theatre) and REVOLVER (Celebration Theatre). York most recently appeared on Broadway in HOLIDAY INN, was in the first National Tour of PIPPIN and previously appeared in TUTS' production of SPAMALOT.

Casting for the production was done by Stewart/Whitley, the official casting agency for Theatre Under The Stars.

DREAMGIRLS will run from April 4-16 at the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts as part of TUTS' 2016-17 Season. Tickets for the show are currently available at TUTS.com or by contacting the TUTS Box Office at 713-558-TUTS (8887).

The Theatre Under The Stars production of DREAMGIRLS is possible thanks to the generous support of production sponsors Apache, ConocoPhillips, Haynes and Boone, LLP, Stavis & Cohen Financial and artist sponsors Ed and Leticia Jaroski, and Gerald and Gail O'Neill. Children's MemoriAl Hermann Hospital is the official healthcare partner of Theatre Under The Stars and the official sponsor of the 2016/17 Season. United Airlines is the official airline partner of Theatre Under The Stars. KTRK ABC13 is the official media partner of Theatre Under The Stars.

Theatre Under The Stars is Houston's leading Musical Theatre Company since 1968, with a focus on education and community engagement. TUTS is a 501(c)(3) Non Profit Organization that relies on the generous support of our donors to deliver first-rate theatre experiences. For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit www.tuts.com.

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