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Adrienne Walker Discusses THE LION KING and More On WHY I'LL NEVER MAKE IT Podcast


Adrienne Walker has also been seen on Broadway as Hattie in the recent revival of Kiss Me, Kate.

Adrienne Walker Discusses THE LION KING and More On WHY I'LL NEVER MAKE IT Podcast

In a continuing series for Black History Month, Adrienne Walker (The Lion King, Kiss Me, Kate) joins host Patrick Oliver Jones to share her experiences with the long-running Broadway musical as well as what she's been doing since the theater closures.

This two-part conversation with Walker also covers some very relevant topics that theater, and especially Broadway, has had to come to terms since the social unrest and outpouring of last summer's demonstrations. Walker shares her experiences auditioning as a black actress and the need for authentic black voices in the arts. There's also stories of fateful auditions and performances, and Walker talks about her YouTube series called 32 Bar Cut, where she seeks to help others navigate this tricky business.

There is specific discussion of her video about Black Hair on Broadway and how hair style and appearance bring added complications and concerns for black actresses. Walker recalls as a child learning what the crayon color "nude" meant and how it didn't apply to her. It is only in recent years, for example, that Actors Equity Association began to change some of the language in their performance contracts. Instead of "nude" hose, theaters must now provide colored hose to match the performer's skin tone. Walker says that most of her life she's been in a society of "white until proven otherwise" where she and other black artists were seen as something other than or outside the norm.

Walker's interview is rather eye-opening and revealing of the often silent struggles people of color can face in this industry. Yes, there is certainly some success, and strides have been made. But this conversation is a reminder of the work still to do and the hope of what can be.

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Adrienne Walker an actor and vocalist based in New York City and a native of Jonesboro, GA, a suburb outside of Atlanta, She received her undergraduate degree in vocal performance at the historic Spelman College in Atlanta and attended The Chicago Conservatory of Performing Arts, completing the program with a masters degree in vocal performance. Her Broadway appearances are Nala in The Lion King and Hattie in Roundabout's revival of Kiss Me, Kate. Notable regional credits are: Sondheim on Sondheim (Porchlight); HAIR and Rent (Paramount Theatre); Iphigenia in Aulis and Agamemnon (Court Theatre); and The Color Purple (Mercury Theatre) where Walker received a Jeff nomination for her performance as Shug Avery.

Why I'll Never Make It is a weekly theater podcast hosted by actor and singer Patrick Oliver Jones and features fellow creatives sharing the ups and downs of theater life and their own struggles and setbacks in the performing arts. Guests for Black History Month include Geoffrey Owens (The Cosby Show), Emmy-winner Erin Cherry (After Forever), and Carrie Bernans (Black Panther).

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