Last week, black star power unexpectedly filled the room at the 2013 Tony Awards. With Neil Patrick Harris as MC and all of Broadway’s brightest stars in one room, the annual celebration of theater would both celebrate and create history. The legendary Cicely Tyson received a standing ovation while accepting her first Tony in decades, proving that age ain’t nothing but a number when it comes to true talent. Courtney B. Vance (Lucky Guy) , Patina Miller (Pippin) and Billy Porter (Kinky Boots) dominated in the acting categories, further solidifying that the Broadway stage can be colorblind.
Get familiar with 6 of our favorite Broadway actresses below.
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She may be the daughter of TV royalty Phylicia Rashad, but Condola is devoted to the Great White Way. In addition to starring in A Trip to Bountiful, she’s slated to appear in an updated stage version of Romeo and Juliet alongside Orlando Bloom.
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A woman of many talents, this TV (Private Practice) and film (Wit) chanteuse is also a stage veteran. She’s earned a record breaking five Tony’s, one for her leading role in the 2012 revival of Porgy and Bess. Her singing voice is regarded as one of the best in the industry. Watch her close this year’s Tony’s (below) with Neil Patrick Harris if you don’t believe us.
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Originally a soap opera actress, Miller made the leap to Broadway as Deloris Van Cartier in Sister Act. Last week, she earned a Best Actress Tony for her portrayal of “Leading Player” in Pippin, a role originated by the legendary Ben Vereen.
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She’s been in multiple shows (Book of Mormon, Ragtime), but 2013 proved to be her breakout year with Motown The Musical. She garnered multiple award nominations for her spot on portrayal of Diana Ross in the Barry Gordy-produced musical.
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We were introduced to this Vixen by way of Memphis. As the musical’s lead actress, she sashays and “sangs” her way into everyone’s heart. She continues to portray Felicia to this day, proving that “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”
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Da’Vine Joy Randolph
A newbie to the theater world, Randolph originally auditioned for an understudy role in Ghost: The Musical and was instead cast in the principal role of Oda Mae Brown. Last year, she was nominated for a “Best Featured Actress in a Musical” Tony.
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