Miami New Drama Artistic Director Michel Hausmann is pleased to announce the cast and creative team for the world premiere of A Wonderful World, a new musical based on the life and songs of jazz legend and American icon Louis Armstrong. The production will play the Colony Theatre (1040 Lincoln Road, Miami Beach, FL.) from March 5 – April 5, with opening night set for March 14.
Drama Desk Award-winner and Tony Award-nominee, Christopher Renshaw (Broadway’s Taboo, The King and I), will direct the production, which will be choreographed by Rickey Tripp (associate choreographer for Broadway’s Once on This Island and Choir Boy).
Juson Williams, Dionne Figgins, Lana Gordon, Nicole Henry, Darlene Hope,
Stephen G. Anthony, DeWitt Fleming Jr., Gavin Gregory and Michael McKeever star. Featuring Kareema Khouri Castro, Lindsey Corey, Jamal Christopher Douglas, Traci Elaine Lee, James A. Pierce III, Khadijah Rolle, Ben Sandomir, Dori Waymer and Shanna L. Woods.
With an original book by Aurin Squire, the multi-talented playwright and television writer (“This is Us,” “The Good Fight,” “Evil”) and Opa-locka, FL. native, A Wonderful World features songs recorded and made popular by Armstrong, arranged and orchestrated by Annastasia Victory and Michael O. Mitchell.
Told from the perspective of the women in Armstrong’s life, A Wonderful World charts Armstrong’s journey from the birth of jazz in his native New Orleans through his international stardom. The musical also focuses on the complex history of race in America, leading up to the Civil Rights era.
“Miami New Drama’s mission is to produce new work that resonates with our community while also contributing to national conversations. A Wonderful World bravely looks at our country’s complicated relationship with race relations over the course of the past century as lived by America’s greatest jazz performer, Louis Armstrong, and the racial inequality that still haunts us today,” says Hausmann.
The production stars Juson Williams as Louis Armstrong, Dionne Figgins as Daisy Parker, Lana Gordonas Lil Harden, Nicole Henry as Alpha Smith, Darlene Hope as Lucille Wilson, Gavin Gregory as King Joe Oliver, Stephen G. Anthony as Joe Glaser, DeWitt Fleming Jr. as Stepin’ Fetchit, and Michael Mckeever as Johnny Collins.
Additional cast includes Kareema Khouri Castro, Lindsey Corey, Jamal Christopher Douglas, Khadijah Rolle, Traci Elaine Lee, James A. Pierce III, Ben Sandomir, Dori Waymer, Shanna L. Woods, and trumpeter Yasmin Mustafa.
The award-winning design team features scenic design by Adam Koch, costume design by Ari Fulton, lighting design by Cory Pattak, sound design by Kai Harada, props design by Jameelah Bailey. Casting is byStewart/Whitley, CSA.
Tickets ($39 -$65) are available for purchase by visiting colony.org or by calling (305) 674-1040.
Founded by Michel Hausmann and Moises Kaufman, Miami New Drama is a nonprofit professional theater company committed to artistic excellence and groundbreaking new work, unique to the diverse and extraordinary city of Miami, with a vision of theater as a powerful form of social engagement. Miami New Drama is the resident company of the historic Colony Theatre on Lincoln Road, Miami Beach. A Wonderful World is the third production of an exciting season which began with David Greenspan’s adaptation of Thornton Wilder’sThe Bridge of San Luis Rey, starring and directed by Greenspan, the world premiere of The Cubans by Michael Leon, and will conclude with Lauren Yee’s The Great Leap, in co-production with Asolo Repertory Theatre.
Miami New Drama is made possible with the support of the City of Miami Beach, Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs and the Cultural Affairs Council, the Miami-Dade County Mayor and Board of County Commissioners, Funding Arts Network, the Jorge M. Perez Family Foundation, and the Knight Foundation.