USA- BroadwayGlobal names "Fela" the Broadway National Tour of the Year." Maybe the only activist musical every written, "Fela" is life changing, a must see. The smash hit musical comes from the true iconic afrobeat, Nigerian legend Fela Kuti's true life.
Kuti a multi-instrumentalist, singer-songwriter wrote a song about his mother's politically charged killing called "Coffin For Head of State". His lyrics in many songs were looked at as activism by his county, possibly inspired by the Black Power Movement while Fela was performing in the United States.
"Fela" is the "Must See Broadway National Tour of the Year." BroadwayGlobal. Fela songs focused on social issues, even attacking corrupted Nigerian solders with his lyrics. The songs enraged the militants bringing them to his compound, which lead to the attack on his own mother.
A triumphant and inspirational tale of courage, passion and love, "Fela" is the true story of Kuti, who created a type of music, Afrobeat, and mixed these pounding eclectic rhythms (a blend of jazz, funk and African rhythm and harmonies) with rousing lyrics. "Fela" National Tour Dates and Locations are listed at the bottom of this article. Please remember to share this link on your favorite social media sites so "Fela" can be shared with the globe.
Now "Fela" is being told like never before. You are so captivated by this concert you don't realize when it turns into a Broadway musical sharing the story of this global activist. Broadway has never had a musical this inspirational or life changing. Fela's lyrics openly attacked the corrupt and oppressive military dictatorships that ruled Nigeria and much of Africa. Broadway Producer Steve Hendel was kind enough to share some fan mail with Theatre Chat. One letter from a cancer survivor who swore "Fela" cured her of cancer. Others saying the music is euphoric. BroadwayGlobal and Theatre Chat agree that, "this Broadway musical with amazing music, dancing and story could change you life."
"Fela" is making it's way around the United States now and like the artist himself is sure to influence the globe. The current tour stars Destiny's Child's singer Michelle Williams. The dancing, musicians and true story of one artist who's lyrics made him an activist for the globe is the "National Tour of The Year. A must see.
"Fela" received three 2010 Tony Awards, including Best Choreography. "Fela" is the Theatre Chat top pick for most unique Broadway Musical in history. The award winning musical has brave new changes from Producers Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter, Will & Jada Pinkett Smith and Ruth & Stephen Hendel who acquired Grammy Award-winning recording artist and former member of Destiny’s Child Michelle Williams.
"The Grammy Award-winning recording artist and former member of Destiny’s Child Michelle Williams is bringing a new younger audience to Broadway shows and a very important musical that offers a concert type style of performance, while sharing the compelling historic journey of Fela Kuti. "BroadwayGlobal.
“This musical journey is one that I’ve wanted to be a part of since first seeing it on stage in 2008. The sounds, the passion and the politics of Fela Kuti have long intrigued me and speak to my heart. I am simply honored.” Michelle Williams.
Featuring many of Fela Kuti’s most captivating songs and Bill T. Jones’s visionary staging, the global phenomenon that is Fela! reveals Kuti's controversial life as an artist and political activist, while at the same time celebrating his pioneering music and commitment to the cause of universal human dignity. "More than a musical, an ecstatic phenomenon" (David Cote, Time Out New York), Fela! "Is a spectacularly inspiring hybrid: theater, music, dance, biography, history lesson, political rally, and religious experience. Sublime" (Joyce Kulhawik).
Fela! is directed and choreographed by Tony Award-winner Bill T. Jones, with a book by Jim Lewisand. "Fela" was conceived by Bill T. Jones, Jim Lewis and Stephen Hendel.
What may shock you is Steve Hendel is not your likely Broadway producer, but when Fela's music touched Mr. Hendel, Steve was hooked and the story was driving him to tell in on a Broadway stage. Now Steve shares "Fela" magic with his new star, Billboard Hot Dance/Club Play and Hot Dance Airplay charts artist Michelle Williams.
In between recordings and concert tours, Michelle conquered Broadway starring in Aida in 2003. Her critical acclaim and audience raves are more reason to see her now in "Fela". In 2007, Michelle took on her greatest acting challenge when she joined the cast of the Broadway smash, The Color Purple National Tour. Williams' dazzled in the role of Shug Avery and In 2009, Michelle joined the London West End production of "Chicago" where she made history as being the first African American woman to play the lead role of Roxie Hart.
Michelle reprised her role in February 2010 on Broadway for a limited engagement. In 2011, Michelle starred in the acclaimed touring stage play What My Husband Doesn't Know which is now showing on BET.
On the music front, Michelle’s latest international single, “On The Run” released in the UK in 2011 and peaked at #4 on Commercial Pop Top 30 Club charts. She collaborated with dance-pop diva, Ultra Naté (Ultra Naté & Michelle Williams) on dance song "Waiting On You” in 2012, Billboard Dance/Club Play charts at #12 (from #17). Michelle is currently in the recording studio working on new material for her pop inspirational album due in 2013.
Michelle is a passionate spokesperson for TERI (Training Education & Research Institute) a non-profit dedicated to improving the quality of life for children and adults with developmental and learning disabilities. She also works with the American Heart Association as an ambassador for the American Stroke Association. Michelle recently became a spokesperson for NVEEE (National Voices for Equality, Education and Enlightenment), an organization focused on preventing bullying, violence and suicide among young people.
Fela! had its world premiere off-Broadway in the summer of 2008, and opened on Broadway at the Eugene O’Neil Theater to rapturous reviews a year later where it played 34 previews and 463 regular performances. Numerous celebrities and dignitaries caught the groundbreaking musical, including First Lady Michelle Obama, Bruce Springsteen, Madonna, Kanye West, Oprah Winfrey and Hugh Jackman, among others.
Broadway, London’s Royal National Theatre presented "Fela" as part of its season in the fall of 2010, marking the first time ever that the National Theatre had presented a show that was simultaneously running on Broadway. There, too, "Fela" received rave reviews and numerous awards and accolades. The show went on to tour internationally, selling out theaters in Nigeria, Amsterdam, a return stint in London then a successful tour across the United States, culminating in an acclaimed encore four-week engagement on Broadway during the summer of 2012.
Now it is your chance to witness "Fela" like never before. Visit www.felaonbroadway.com for current National Tour Schedule.
Miami, FL Arsht Center: March 19, through March 24, 2013.
Cleveland, OH Palace Theater: April 2, 2013 through April 4, 2013.
Buffalo, NY Shea's Performing Arts: April 5, through April 6, 2013.
Tucson, AZ UA Centennial Hall: April 12, through April 13, 2013.
Tempe, AZ The Gammage: April 23, through April 24, 2013.
Los Angeles, CA Ahmanson Theatre: April 25, through May 5, 2013.
Dallas, TX Winspear Opera House: May 7, through May 19, 2013.
Seattle, WA The Paramount Theater: May 28, through June 2, 2013.
Oakland, CA Paramount Theatre: June 6, through June 9, 2013.
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