Photo Flash: First Look at Cleavant Derricks, Larry Marshall and More in Goodman Theatre's PULLMAN PORTER BLUES
Goodman Theatre Resident Director Chuck Smith presents the Chicago premiere production of Cheryl L. West's Pullman Porter Blues-a 2013 Helen Hayes/Charles MacArthur Award nominee for Outstanding New Play/Musical. BroadwayWorld has a first look at the cast in action below!
This blues-infused "glorious ride" (DCist) follows three generations of African American Pullman porters in the 1930s in an updated production especially for the city of Pullman's origin. Tony Award winner Cleavant Derricks (Broadway's original James "Thunder" Early in Dreamgirls) portrays Sylvester Sykes, a second-generation railway porter, union organizer and father. Tony Award nominee Larry Marshall (Sportin' Life in Broadway's Porgy and Bess) portrays Monroe Sykes, the family patriarch grateful for the opportunities given to him by the Pullman company.
Newcomer Tosin Morohunfola portrays Cephas, the youngest Sykes son and med-school hopeful with an itch for adventure. Chicago stage favorite E. Faye Butler portrays Sister Juba "with infectious spirit and adroit comedic timing" (Variety), Francis Guinan (August: Osage County) portrays Tex, the conniving white train conductor, and Claire Kander makes her Goodman Theatre debut in the role of Lutie, a stowaway.
The musicians aboard the train include Jmichael (Keys) on piano, Anderson Edwards (Shorty) on bass, Chic Street Man (Professor Slick) on guitar and Senuwell Smith (Twist) on drums.
Pullman Porter Blues runs now through October 20 in the Albert Theatre (opening night is Tuesday, September 24). Tickets ($25 - $86; subject to change) are available at GoodmanTheatre.org/Pullman, by phone at 312.443.3800 or at the box office (170 North Dearborn). Abbott Fund and Allstate are Corporate Sponsor Partners. ComEd is the Official Lighting Sponsor. A full performance calendar follows.
Photo Credit: Liz Lauren