Full Cast Announced For Louis Armstrong Bio-Musical “A Wonderful World” + Vanessa Williams to Produce

louis armstrong musical

Tony Award nominee Vanessa Williams has joined the lead producing team for the Louis Armstrong bio-musical, “A Wonderful World.” The production focuses on the life and legacy of jazz icon Louis Armstrong, with James Monroe Iglehart taking on the role of Armstrong. Alongside this exciting announcement, the full cast for the musical has been unveiled, featuring a talented ensemble of actors.

In addition to James Monroe Iglehart’s portrayal of Louis Armstrong, the principal cast of “A Wonderful World” includes Ta’Rea Campbell as Lucille Wilson, Jennie Harney-Fleming as Lil Hardin, Brennyn Lark as Alpha Smith, and Khalifa White as Daisy Parker.

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Directed by Christopher Renshaw and conceived by Renshaw and novelist Andrew Delaplaine, “A Wonderful World” features an original book by Aurin Squire. The musical incorporates songs recorded and made popular by Louis Armstrong, paying homage to his influential musical career.

The talented cast of “A Wonderful World” also includes DeWitt Fleming Jr., Gavin Gregory, Matthew Greenwood, and Matt Wolpe. Additionally, Ronnie Bowman, Lindsey Corey, Jamal Christopher Douglas, Alexandra Frohlinger, Afra Hines, Alan Kelly, Ashley McManus, Aurelia Michael, Alysha Morgan, Jarran Muse, Aaron Michael Ray, Khadijah Rolle, Dave Schoonover, Brett Sturgis, Renell Taylor, and Dori Waymer will bring their skills to the ensemble.

The narrative of “A Wonderful World” traces Armstrong’s musical journey from his roots in New Orleans to his influential years in Chicago. The musical is set to premiere this year at the Saenger Theatre in New Orleans from October 1-8, followed by a run at the Cadillac Palace Theatre in Chicago from October 11-29. While plans are in motion to eventually bring the show to Broadway, specific dates and further details are yet to be announced.

Vanessa Williams expressed her enthusiasm for joining the producing team, citing her previous collaboration with Carl White and Greg Rae on the play “One Reach Away.” Williams stated, “They told me about this Louis Armstrong piece, and I had to read it. What captured me was the life of Louis was told through the perspectives of his four wives, and that’s when my producing partner Liz Curtis and I dove in.” Williams, known for her acclaimed performances on television shows like “Ugly Betty” and “Desperate Housewives,” as well as her Tony-nominated Broadway roles, is making her theatrical producing debut with “A Wonderful World.”

The producing team of “A Wonderful World” includes Thomas E. Rodgers, Jr., Renee Rodgers, Andrew Delaplaine, Liz Curtis, and Martian Entertainment, represented by Carl D. White and Gregory Rae. The collaboration between these experienced producers, along with the addition of Vanessa Williams, ensures a strong foundation for the success of the production.

With Vanessa Williams joining the producing team and an impressive cast in place, anticipation continues to grow for the highly anticipated “A Wonderful World.” As the production prepares to showcase the extraordinary life and music of Louis Armstrong, fans of the jazz legend eagerly await the announcement of its Broadway premiere.



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