5 Time Grammy Winner Usher Joins Chicago August 22

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Barry and Fran Weissler, producers of the hit Broadway musical Chicago announced today that 5 time Grammy Award winner Usher will join the cast on August 22nd starring as Billy Flynn. Usher will continue in the show until October 1st. The 27-year old superstar whose last album, "Confessions" sold over 15 million albums worldwide, will be making his Broadway debut.

Far beyond the extraordinary levels of success that Usher has achieved in his meteoric rise to global superstardom as singer, composer, producers, film and television actor, businessman and philanthropist, Usher has once again stepped into a new realm in his career that will take him to new heights.

Usher is the latest in star casting of Chicago that has brought to the stage the likes of Melanie Griffith, Brooke Shields, Kevin Richardson, Wayne Brady, Huey Lewis and many more, some making their Broadway debuts and all receiving critical acclaim. The worldwide phenomenon of the musical, which opened in November of 1996 and will be celebrating it's l0th year on Broadway this year, has been unsurpassed in theatre history with companies presented from England (still running in it's 9th smash year) to Argentina-from Sweden to South Africa and from Dubai to Japan. There is also a current national tour out crossing the U.S., which has been continually running since 1997. Chicago also spawned the Academy Award winning film version.

"Usher will certainly add excitement to the Broadway season with his many legions of fans experiencing live theatre". Barry Weissler says speaking on behalf of the entire production team and company "We could not be happier to have such a major star of the music world bring his talent to our show. His amazing presence and voice will certainly make a most impressive Billy Flynn and will establish him as a force on Broadway. Everyone connected with Chicago is looking forward to Usher's engagement and we welcome him to his new Broadway family."

"This is a very exciting time in my career," says Usher. "I have always admired Broadway actors for their showmanship, dedication and focus that goes into performing live on stage every night. Being on Broadway allows you to connect to audiences in a whole new way that's different from music and movies. When they asked me to play Billy Flynn in "Chicago", I jumped at the chance to be a part of such an amazing production."

Hailed as "The Ultimate Entertainer" Usher's 5th album, "Confessions" released in 2004, dominated the album charts and broke numerous records. "Confessions" sold over 15 million copies and spun off four phenomenal #1 Pop and #1 R&B hit singles. Usher has garnered countless awards including 5 Grammy Awards, several American Music Awards, MTV Video Music Awards, BET Awards, Billboard Awards, among many others. He has appeared in movies such as "She's All That", "The Faculty", "Light it Up", "Geppetto", "Texas Rangers" and "In the Mix". His television credits include "The Twilight Zone", "7th Heaven", "Moesha" and Dick Clark's "American Dreams" (portraying Marvin Gaye).

Chicago, written by Bob Fosse and Fred Ebb, with music and lyrics by John Kander & Fred Ebb, is directed by Walter Bobbie and choreographed by Ann Reinking. It received six 1997 Tony Awards including Best Revival of a Musical.

Chicago is playing at the Ambassador Theatre, 219 West 49th Street. Tickets are available through Telecharge.com at 212 239-6200 . www.chicagothemusical.com

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