STAGE TUBE: Saul Williams Talks Playing the Lead in HOLLER IF YA HEAR ME on CBS
"Holler If Ya Hear Me", the first show of the new Broadway season, is based on the music and lyrics of the late rapper Tupac Shakur. In the video below, CBS 2's Dana Tyler talks with the actor and poet who plays the lead character in Broadway's first Hip-Hop musical - Saul Williams!
HOLLER IF YA HEAR ME, the world inside Tupac Shakur's music and lyrics, blazes to life in a non-biographical story about friendship, family, revenge, change and hope. Inner city lives struggle for peace against the daily challenges they face in this entertaining and original musical. Through the poetry of one of the 20th century's most influential and culturally prominent voices, we are given a window into realities of the streets still relevant today.
HOLLER IF YA HEAR ME stars award-winning slam poet, actor, singer, musician Saul Williams (Slam) as John, Christopher Jackson(After Midnight) as Vertus, Saycon Sengbloh (Motown The Musical, Fela!) as Corinne, Ben Thompson (Matilda) as Griffy, John EarlJelks (Radio Golf - Tony nomination) as Street Preacher, Joshua Boone (Brownsville Song [b side for Tray] at Actors Theatre of Louisville) as Darius, Dyllon Burnside ("Prison Break") as Anthony and Tony Award winner Tonya Pinkins (Jelly's Last Jam, Caroline or Change, Play On!) as Mrs. Weston.
The cast also features Tracee Beazer (Memphis), Afi Bijou (Fela!), Mel Charlot (Three-time World Hip Hop Champion), CarrieCompere (Shrek National Tour), Otis Cotton, Ryan Davis (danced for Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj), Brandon Gill (Neighbors at The Public), Ari Groover (Bare Off-Broadway), F. Michael Haynie (Wicked), Jared Joseph (Book of Mormon National Tour), Jahi Kearse(Baby It's You), Muata Langley (freestyle Krump performer), Candace Maxwell, Valentine Norton ("American Idol"), Christina Sajous(Spider-Man: Turn off the Dark), Charlene "Chi Chi" Smith, Jaime Lincoln Smith (Ruined Off-Broadway), Donald Webber, Jr.(Motown The Musical) and Joaquina Kalukango (Godspell).
Joining director Kenny Leon (A Raisin in the Sun [2004 and Tony Award in 2014], Fences , The Mountaintop) and author Todd Kreidler(Guess Who's Coming to Dinner and direction of How I Learned What I Learned) on the creative team, are Tony Award winning choreographerWayne Cilento (Wicked, The Who's Tommy, How to Succeed..., AIDA, Sweet Charity ), and musical supervisor Daryl Waters (Bring in 'Da Noise, Bring In 'Da Funk, The Color Purple, Memphis).
The creative team also includes scenic design by Edward Pierce (The Other Place, Shatner's World) based on original concepts by David Gallo, projections by Zachary G. Borovay (No Man's Land, Waiting for Godot), costumes by Reggie Ray (Stick Fly), lighting by Mike Baldassari (Cabaret[1998/2014], First Date), sound by John Shivers (Kinky Boots) and David Patridge (Soul Doctor) and casting by Caparelliotis Casting (CasaValentina, The Trip to Bountiful).
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