DeEtta West, Sister Of Cleavon Little, Winner Of The Tony Award For His Role In Purlie, Is Featured As Idella In Purlie

By: Aug. 25, 2018
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DeEtta West, Sister Of Cleavon Little, Winner Of The Tony Award For His Role In Purlie, Is Featured As Idella In Purlie

DeEtta West is featured in the role of Idella Landy in the production of Purlie, opening at the Orange Box Theater on September 29. DeEtta accepted the role as a personal tribute to her late brother, Cleavon Little, winner of the Tony Award in 1970 for his performance as Purlie in the hit show. The show runs through October 7, 2018 (Orange Box Theater @ Mark SQuared Studios, 1804 Montreal Court, Ste B, Tucker, GA 30084)

DeEtta West is one part of the vocal duo behind the now famous single Gonna Fly Now, also known as "Theme from Rocky." Her breakthrough acting role was as Ms. Addy in the feature film Welcome Home, Roscoe Jenkins, followed by her role as Emma in the Preacher's Kid. An UPtv favorite; she has been featured in over 15 movies on the channel and stars as Myra in the 5-movie seasonal series Marry Me for Christmas. She has also been seen on popular TV shows such as Meet the Browns, Greenleaf, The Ricky Smiley Show, and Saints & Sinners. Her work on stage includes "Angels in Training," "No More Drama, Please," "Busline 210" and "A Taste of Life."

Purlie currently stars Ron Edwards as Purlie Victorious Judson, Tanasha West as Lutiebelle Gussie Mae Jenkins, Crystalyn Monet as Missy Judson, Terry J. Kiser as Gitlow Judson, Brian Christopher Roberson as Charlie Cotchipee, DeEtta West as Idella Landy, and Ian Scott as Ol' Cap'n Cotchipee.

With a book by Ossie Davis, Phillip Rose, and Peter Udell, music by Gary Geld and lyrics by Peter Udell. Both Cleavon Little and Melba Moore won the 1970 Tony for their leading roles. The cast album received a 1971 Grammy nomination for the Best Musical Cast Recording.

Co-directed by Tiffany Roberts and Vada Coleman and choreographed by PK Smith, Purlie features set design by David Littlefield, costume design by Tomica Savoy with assistance from the House of Van Miller and HGII Vintage Wear.

Set amidst the fall of Jim Crow laws in the late 1960's, Purlie Victorious Judson is responding to the call to preach the new gospel of freedom. Unlike his other ventures, this time he means it. All he is missing is the cash needed to re-open the doors of Big Bethel, his hometown church. So purlie, with his brother Gitlow and sister-in-law Missy, concocts a foolproof plan to persuade Ol' Cap'n, a Georgia plantation owner, into giving them the inheritance due to a long-lost cousin. Everything is going as planned until Lutibelle, a girl purlie found to stand-in for the heir, makes an irreparable mistake. Set to music that is sure to make one's feet tap; watch this delightful story unfold as this newfangled preacher man, willing to challenge the rules of propriety, pursues his dream to ring the bell for freedom.

Purlie plays for 5 performances on September 29, 2018 through October 7, 2018 at the Orange Box Theater @ Mark SQuared Studios located at 1804 Montreal Court, Ste B, Tucker, GA 30084. Tickets can be purchased at


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