Tony and Grammy Award-winning jazz singer Dee Dee Bridgewater (The Wiz) will return to the New York stage this September in Lady Day, a new musical about legendary singer Billie Holiday. Written and directed by Stephen Stahl, Lady Day will begin previews September 12 at the Little Shubert Theatre in advance of a September 26 opening.
A play with music, Lady Day uses twenty-five Billie Holiday standards, including "Strange Fruit," "My Man," and "Good Morning Heartache," to tell the inspired and heart-breaking story of Holiday's attempts at a final comeback performance. The work arrives in New York following productions in the mid-1980s at the Theatre de Boulogne-Billancourt and the Théâtre du Gymnase Marie Bell in Paris, as well as at London's Donmar Warehouse and Piccadilly Theatre. Produced by Misty Road Productions, the show's creative team includes three-time Emmy Award-winning composer/arranger Bill Jolly as musical director.
For her performance as Billie Holiday, Bridgewater received a 1987 Olivier Award nomination for Best Actress in a Musical. She won a 1975 Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Musical for her performance as Glinda in the classic show The Wiz, and appeared in the 1979 Broadway production of Walton Jones' The 1940's Radio Hour. Nominated for nine Grammy Awards, Bridgewater has won three, including two Best Jazz Vocal Album awards for Dear Ella and Eleanora Fagan (1915-1959): To Billie with Love from Dee Dee. Her many other stage credits include Sophisticated Ladies, Black Ballad, and Cabaret, in which she was the first black actress to star as Sally Bowles.