Amber Gray, who originated the role of Persephone in Hadestown, the Tony Award®-winning Best New Musical, will play her final performance at the Walter Kerr Theatre (219 West 48th Street) on Saturday evening, February 19. Lana Gordon, who has been performing as the Persephone alternate, succeeds Gray in the role beginning February 22.
Gray will join Daniel Craig and Ruth Negga in the Broadway production of Macbeth starring as Banquo, and begins previews at the Longacre Theatre on March 29. The production is slated to open on April 28.
Gray currently stars as the scene-stealing “Persephone” in the Tony Award-winning Best Musical Hadestown, for which she received a Tony nomination for “Best Featured Actress in a Musical” and won the Outer Critics Circle Award in the same category, among numerous honors. She has appeared in every iteration of Hadestown’s development beginning at New York Theatre Workshop, through Edmonton’s Citadel Theatre and London’s National Theatre, leading to its current, record-breaking Broadway engagement. She made her Broadway debut in the Tony-nominated Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet Of 1812 opposite Josh Groban, for which she won the Theatre World Award. Hadestown and Great Comet mark the latest in her long-time theatre collaborations with Tony-winning director Rachel Chavkin. She can always be found developing new shows with Chavkin’s Brooklyn based, devised theater company The Team or with radical performance community Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping. Amber also memorably starred in Branden Jacobs-Jenkins’ Obie winning An Octoroon, Taylor Mac’s Pulitzer Prize finalist A 24-Decade History Of Popular Music, and Daniel Fish’s Bard SummerScape Production of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma!. On the television side, she can recently be seen recurring as “Gloria Valentine” in Barry Jenkin’s Golden Globe Award Winning “The Underground Railroad” for Amazon. Prior to this, she was in Showtime’s Emmy-nominated limited series “Escape At Dannemora,” directed by Ben Stiller and starring Patricia Arquette, Benicio Del Toro, and Paul Dano. Amber holds an MFA in Acting from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts.
In addition to Gray, the Broadway cast of Hadestown is led by Grammy Award winner Reeve Carney, Tony Award winner André De Shields, two-time Tony Award nominee Eva Noblezada, and Tony Award nominee Patrick Page. They are joined by Jewelle Blackman, Jessie Shelton, and Kay Trinidad as the Fates and Lana Gordon as the Persephone alternate. The chorus of Workers is played by Emily Afton, Malcolm Armwood, Timothy Hughes, Trent Saunders, Grace Yoo. The cast includes swings Sojourner Brown, Tara Jackson, Tomás Matos, Sayo Oni, Yael “YaYa” Reich, and T. Oliver Reid.
Tickets for Hadestown on Broadway are available at www.seatgeek.com/hadestown-tickets or by visiting the Walter Kerr Theatre box office (219 West 48th Street).
The show originated as Mitchell’s indie theater project that toured Vermont which she then turned into an acclaimed album. With Chavkin, her artistic collaborator, Hadestown has been transformed into a genre-defying new musical that blends modern American folk music with New Orleans-inspired jazz to reimagine a sweeping ancient tale.
Following two intertwining love stories – that of young dreamers Orpheus and Eurydice, and that of King Hades and his wife Persephone – Hadestown invites audiences on a hell-raising journey to the underworld and back. Mitchell’s beguiling melodies and Chavkin’s poetic imagination pit industry against nature, doubt against faith, and fear against love. Performed by a vibrant ensemble of actors, dancers, and singers, Hadestown delivers a deeply resonant and defiantly hopeful theatrical experience.
Hadestown is the most honored show of the 2018-2019 season. In addition to the show’s eight Tony Awards, it has been honored with four Drama Desk Awards, six Outer Critics Circle Awards including Outstanding New Broadway Musical and the Drama League Award for Outstanding Production of a Musical. The show is already the highest-grossing musical in the history of the Walter Kerr Theatre (219 West 48th Street).
Hadestown marks the first time in over a decade that a woman has been the solo author of a musical: writing the music, lyrics, and book, and is the fourth time in Broadway history a woman has accomplished this creative feat. It also marks the first time in Broadway history that a show’s female composer and female director both won Tony Awards for their work.
The creative team for Broadway features Tony Award winner Rachel Hauck (set design), four-time Tony Award nominee Michael Krass (costume design), two-time Tony Award winner Bradley King (lighting design), Tony Award winners Nevin Steinberg and Jessica Paz (sound design), Obie Award® winner and Chita Rivera Award® winner David Neumann (choreography), Liam Robinson (music direction and vocal arrangements), Tony Award winners Michael Chorney and Todd Sickafoose (arrangements and orchestrations), Ken Cerniglia (dramaturgy), and Stewart/Whitley (casting).
The North American tour is now on the road and will play over 30 cities in its first season with more to be announced shortly. For the latest tour route and other information, please visit: http://www.hadestown.com/tour
The Original Broadway Cast Recording of Hadestown is also available on CD and streaming. The album was released digitally in summer of 2019, and topped Billboard’s Broadway Cast Recording chart, and debuted at #8 on the Top Album chart. The CD edition features a 64-page booklet and a two-disc set, while the triple vinyl edition features a 16-page booklet. Both editions include complete song lyrics and never before seen photos of the Hadestown cast and creative team in the studio, and other exclusive content.
In fall of 2020, Mitchell released Working On A Song: The Lyrics of Hadestown, an illuminating book of lyrics and stories about her more than decade’s long process of building the musical from the ground up. Working On A Song is available from Penguin Random House.
Hadestown electrified audiences with its 2016 world premiere at New York Theatre Workshop, which is the longest-running show in that celebrated theater’s 40-year history. The production then received its Canadian premiere at Edmonton’s Citadel Theatre in 2017 and then a 2018 sold-out engagement at the London’s National Theatre prior to Broadway. Hadestown was developed with funding from the Eli and Edythe Broad Stage at the Santa Monica College Performing Arts Center and was further developed by The Ground Floor at Berkeley Repertory Theatre. Hadestown was co-conceived by Ben t. Matchstick.
Lia Chang loves to tell stories – as an actor, a multi-media content producer, a performing arts photographer and an award-winning filmmaker. A co-founder of Bev’s Girl Films, Lia makes films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. Lia has appeared in the films Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, and The Last Dragon. She stars in and is the Executive Producer for the indie films Hide and Seek (AA Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout Best Actress Nomination), Rom-Com Gone Wrong, and When the World Was Young (2021 DisOrient Film Audience Choice Award for Best Short Narrative). Lia made her stage debut as Liat in a national tour of South Pacific with Barbara Eden and Robert Goulet, was featured as Joy in Signature Theatre’s revival of Sam Shepard’s Chicago and has worked extensively Off-Broadway. Photo archives: Lia Chang Theater Portfolio collection,1989-2011, housed in the AAPI collection in the Library of Congress’ Asian Reading Room; Lia Chang Photography Collection in The Billy Rose Theatre Division of the New York Public Library. Awards: 2000 OCA Chinese American Journalist Award, the 2001 AAJA National Award for New Media. Lia is an AAJA Executive Leadership Graduate (2000), a Western Knight Fellow at USC’s Annenberg College of Communications for Specialized Journalism on Entertainment Journalism in the Digital Age (2000), a National Press Photographers Association Visual Edge/Visual Journalism Fellow at the Poynter Institute for New Media (2001), a Scripps Howard New Media Fellow at the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism (2002), and a National Tropical Garden Environmental Journalism Fellow (2003). www.liachang.com, www.liachangphotography.com