The critically acclaimed Broadway revival of for colored girls who have considered suicide / when the rainbow is enuf will close May 22, cutting short its run by three months.
The new staging of for colored girls…, directed and choreographed by Camille A. Brown, opened at the Booth Theatre on April 20 to overwhelming critical praise. Broadway Blog critic Winnie McCroy declared that “Shange’s cycle of poetic monologues finds a way to put a rainbow of vibrant color back in what can often be a very bleak world.” The play’s original Broadway staging, which opened at the same theater in 1976, was a commercial success, running for 742 performances.
What happened? Seventeen Broadway shows opened in April, and the resulting glut of new productions has made it difficult for any show to stand out. for colored girls… is a play with no bankable stars in its cast, always a greater risk on Broadway. And three years passed in between the revival’s equally acclaimed off-Broadway debut, at The Public Theater in 2019, and its Broadway debut, thanks to delays caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
“We are so proud to have brought Ntozake Shange’s brilliant choreopoem back to Broadway after 46 years from its original premiere and to have had the opportunity to share Camille’s vision and masterful work with a sensational ensemble of women on stage at the Booth Theatre each night,” said producers Nelle Nugent, Ron Simons and Kenneth Teaton. “As Broadway continues to rebound, we knew it would be challenging and our goal remains to present these voices and introduce a new generation of audiences to the power of theatre and the power of Shange’s words.”
The cast stars Amara Granderson as Lady in Orange, Tendayi Kuumba as Lady in Brown, Kenita R. Miller as Lady in Red, Okwui Okpokwasili as Lady in Green, Stacey Sargeant as Lady in Blue, Alexandria Wailes as Lady in Purple, and D. Woods as Lady in Yellow. Rachel Christopher, Treshelle Edmond, McKenzie Frye, Kala Ross and Alexis Sims join the company as standbys and understudies.