Jennifer Holliday Kicks Off Her Run in The Color Purple
Tony and Grammy Award winner Jennifer Holliday begins her run in The Color Purple tonight at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre. She takes over for Tony winner Heather Headley, who played her final performance as Shug Avery on October 2.
Holliday made her Broadway debut in Vinnette Carroll's Your Arms Too Short to Box With God as a featured soloist. Beyond Broadway, Holliday appeared as Lisa Knowles on the Fox TV show Ally McBeal. She won her first Grammy Award for the Dreamgirls song "And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going."
The role of Shug Avery in this revival was originated by Jennifer Hudson, who won an Oscar for playing Effie White in the film adaptation of Dreamgirls — the role Holliday originated on Broadway and which earned her a Tony Award.
The Color Purple, which opened on December 10, 2015, also stars Tony winner Cynthia Erivo as Celie and Tony nominee Danielle Brooks as Sofia. Adapted from the novel of the same name by Alice Walker, The Color Purple features a book by Marsha Norman with music and lyrics by Brenda Russell, Allee Willis, and Stephen Bray.
The company of The Color Purple also includes Isaiah Johnson as Mister, Jennie Harney as Nettie, Kyle Scatliffe as Harpo, with Phoenix Best, Angela Birchett, Dwayne Clark, Lawrence Clayton, Carrie Compere, Patrice Covington, J. Daughtry, Adrianna Hicks, Bre Jackson, Grasan Kingsberry, Kevin Mambo, Ken Robinson, Antoine L. Smith, Carla R. Stewart, Akron Watson, and Rema Webb.