The Broadway premiere of A Strange Loop, Michael R. Jackson’s Pulitzer-Prize winning musical, directed by Stephen Brackett, choreographed by Raja Feather Kelly, and produced by Barbara Whitman along with Page 73 Productions, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company and Playwrights Horizons, kicks off previews at Broadway’s Lyceum Theatre (149 W 45th St) on Wednesday, April 6, 2022. Opening night is set for Tuesday, April 26, 2022.
The Broadway cast of A Strange Loop features Jaquel Spivey, in his Broadway debut, as Usher. He joins original cast members Antwayn Hopper (Thought 6), L Morgan Lee (Thought 1), John-Michael Lyles (Thought 3), James Jackson, Jr. (Thought 2), John-Andrew Morrison (Thought 4), and Jason Veasey (Thought 5). Edwin Bates, Kyle Ramar Freeman, Jon-Michael Reese and Mars Rucker are understudies.
Tickets for A Strange Loop range from $49 – $179 (inclusive of the $2 facility fee) and are available at Telecharge.com (212-239-6200). The performance schedule for A Strange Loop is as follows: Monday through Saturday at 8pm, with matinees Saturday at 2pm. Please note there will be an added matinee Wednesday, April 20 at 2pm, and no performance Wednesday, April 27. Beginning Thursday, April 28 the playing schedule is as follows: Tuesday and Thursday at 7pm, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday at 8pm, with matinees Wednesday and Saturday at 2pm, and Sunday at 3pm. Please note performances on Sunday, May 1 will be at 2pm and 7pm.
A Strange Loop features set design by Arnulfo Maldonado, costumes by Montana Levi Blanco, lighting design by Jen Schriever, sound design by Drew Levy, music direction by Rona Siddiqui, orchestrations by Charlie Rosen and casting by The Telsey Office/Destiny Lilly.
Meet Usher: a Black, queer writer writing a musical about a Black, queer writer writing a musical about a Black, queer writer…
Michael R. Jackson’s Pulitzer Prize-winning, blisteringly funny masterwork exposes the heart and soul of a young artist grappling with desires, identity, and instincts he both loves and loathes. Hell-bent on breaking free of his own self-perception, Usher wrestles with the thoughts in his head, brought to life on stage by a hilarious, straight-shooting ensemble. Bold and heartfelt in its truth-telling, A Strange Loop is the big, Black, and queer-ass Great American Musical for all.
Reviewing the recent run of A Strange Loop at the Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, Peter Marks of The Washington Post describes Jackson’s musical as “marvelously inventive, exhilarating, and beautifully staged by director Stephen Brackett and choreographer Raja Feather Kelly.” He writes, “There is so much to raise the spirits here. Jaquel Spivey makes an electric debut; it’s a guarantee you’ll never forget him. The score, played by a five-member band conducted by music director Rona Siddiqui, boils and bubbles in an ecstatic cascade of musicality. The ensemble members all deserve shout-outs.”
Michael R. Jackson was awarded the 2020 Pulitzer Prize in Drama for A Strange Loop.
A Strange Loop made its world premiere at Playwrights Horizons, in association with Page 73 Productions, in May 2019 to sold-out crowds. The show quickly became a critical favorite, praised as “exhilarating and wickedly funny” by New York Magazine’s Sara Holdren. Following the successful run, A Strange Loop was the recipient of five Drama Desk Awards, two Lucille Lortel Awards, six Outer Critics Circle honors, two Obie awards, one Off-Broadway Alliance Award, and the New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Musical. Playwrights Horizons’ original cast recording of A Strange Loop is available on Yellow Sound.
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For more information on A Strange Loop visit www.strangeloopmusical.com
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Lia Chang is a Chinese-American actor, a multi-media content producer, an award-winning filmmaker, and a photo activist and documentarian, who lifts up and amplifies BIPOC communities and artists and the institutions that support them.
Lia moved to New York from her home in San Francisco when she was 17 years of age and made her stage debut as Liat in a national tour of South Pacific with Barbara Eden and Robert Goulet. She spent many years working extensively Off-Broadway, including Signature Theatre’s revival of Sam Shepard’s Chicago. Her film work includes Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, and The Last Dragon. The decades of being viewed by others through the narrow lens of “Asian actor” in the industry brought Lia to a turning point, and she picked up her camera, determined to create awareness by documenting the work and the lives of her BIPOC colleagues, resulting in the creation of thousands of photographs and pieces of video. Her photo archives are housed in the AAPI collection in the Library of Congress’ Asian Reading Room under “Lia Chang Theater Portfolio collection,1989-2011” and in the “Lia Chang Photography Collection” in The Billy Rose Theatre Division of the New York Public Library.
Lia’s awards include the 2000 OCA Chinese American Journalist Award and the 2001 AAJA National Award for New Media. She is also an AAJA Executive Leadership Graduate, a Western Knight Fellow at USC’s Annenberg College of Communications for Specialized Journalism on Entertainment Journalism in the Digital Age, a National Press Photographers Association Visual Edge/Visual Journalism Fellow at the Poynter Institute for New Media, and a Scripps Howard New Media Fellow at the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism.
More recently, Lia co-founded Bev’s Girl Films, which makes films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. She executive produced and starred in 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).
A retrospective of Lia’s photographs will be on view at the Museum of the City of New York later this year, documenting her BIPOC colleagues and contemporaries in the performing arts, which will include photos of Prospect Theater Company artists at work. www.liachang.com, www.liachangphotography.com