As we finish celebrating Black History Month, the team at Stagedoor Boxes has created the most amazing Spotify playlist celebrating Black Excellence on Broadway. The playlist includes songs from historically significant Black musical theater to tear jerkers from Tony legend Audra MacDonald. You can listen to the playlist here.
But I would be remiss if I didn't put together a list of my all time favorite performances to share with all my loyal readers.
BEAUTY SCHOOL DROP OUT - GREASE - BILLY PORTER
I saw the revival version of Grease when I was seven years old. Even then, I knew I was in the presence of greatness. Although it's not the full clip of the song, this short clip is enough to show off his immense talent. It's my favorite version of the song to date.
MAMA WILL PROVIDE - ONCE ON THIS ISLAND - ALEX NEWELL
I was a huge fan of Alex on Glee and The Glee Project. I was so excited to see him in his Broadway debut in Once on This Island. As amazing as this recording session is, it's a fraction of what he does live. The audience literally gave him a standing ovation both times I saw it.
STARS - LES MISERABLES - NORM LEWIS
Norm Lewis takes a song that I used to skip and makes me want to listen to it. The emotion, the voice, everything. This song wasn't available for the Spotify playlist so I made sure to include it here.
AND I AM TELLING YOU - DREAMGIRLS - JENNIFER HOLIDAY
Everyone in this clip is amazing but Jennifer Holiday is the a Broadway legend that literally everyone strives to be. This song is so difficult melodically and rhythmically and she sings it like she has not a care in the world. Epic.
SUMMERTIME - PORGY & BESS - AUDRA MACDONALD
There's a reason why she has won the most Tony Awards out of any other woman. She is literally the Meryl Streep of the Tony Awards. She is literally the definition of a true soprano. Flawless in almost everyway.
Those are my top 5 examples of Black Excellence on Broadway. I'd love to hear yours!