Deborah Cox, Wayne Brady, Melody A. Betts Among 7 Cast in ‘The Wiz’ Broadway Revival

the wiz broadway revival

Deborah Cox, Melody A. Betts, Wayne Brady, Alan Mingo Jr., Kyle Ramar Freeman, Phillip Johnson Richardson, and Avery Wilson have been cast in the highly anticipated Broadway revival of ‘The Wiz.’

Brady is cast as the title character The Wiz with Mingo Jr. taking the role during many of the production’s pre-Broadway tour dates. Freeman is cast as the Lion, Johnson Richardson joins as the Tinman, with Avery Wilson as the Scarecrow. Cox joins as Glinda, the Good Witch of the South and Betts joins as Eveilene/Aunt Em.

Additional casting, including for the character of Dorothy, will be announced in the coming weeks.

the wiz broadway revival

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The announcement of Cox and Betts’ casting was made today by producers Kristin Caskey, Mike Isaacson, Brian Anthony Moreland, Kandi Burruss, Todd Tucker, and Ambassador Theatre Group. This revival of “The Wiz” is set to begin a national tour in the fall of 2023, with plans for a limited engagement on Broadway in the spring of 2024, coinciding with the 50th Anniversary of the original production. The tour will kick off in Baltimore, where the show first premiered five decades ago, before traveling across the country and finally landing in New York City.

Brady will play the Wiz on Broadway in Spring of 2024, and in San Francisco (January 16 – February 11, 2024) at the Golden Gate Theatre, and Los Angeles (February 13 – March 3, 2024) at the Hollywood Pantages Theatre. Mingo Jr. will portray the Wiz on this fall’s (2023) National Tour in Baltimore, Cleveland, Washington, DC, Pittsburgh, Charlotte, Atlanta, Greenville, Chicago, Des Moines, Tempe, and San Diego.

Directed by Schele Williams, this latest version of “The Wiz” aims to transform L. Frank Baum’s classic children’s novel “The Wizard of Oz” into an all-Black musical extravaganza. Williams expressed her deep connection to the show, stating, “I wouldn’t be on Broadway if it wasn’t for ‘The Wiz’…seeing that show changed my life. It is, in every way, a celebration of Black excellence.” She feels honored to helm this production and believes that now is the perfect time to tell this powerful story.

With a score by Charlie Smalls and a book by William F. Brown, this revival of “The Wiz” promises to captivate audiences with its incredible talent and dazzling choreography by Jaquel Knight. The creative team also includes the renowned Amber Ruffin, who will provide additional material, and Joseph Joubert, responsible for musical arrangements, music supervision, and orchestrations.

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“The Wiz” originally premiered on Broadway in 1975 with an all-Black cast and received critical acclaim, winning seven Tony Awards, including Best Musical. It went on to have a successful four-year run on Broadway and was later adapted into a feature film in 1978. The film starred Diana Ross, Michael Jackson, and other notable performers. In 2015, a live television special of “The Wiz” was produced by NBC.

Stay tuned for further announcements regarding casting, specific dates, and the theater where “The Wiz” will be performed. The casting process is being handled by Tara Rubin Casting, with Kristin Caskey, Mike Isaacson, Brian Anthony Moreland, and Ambassador Theatre Group serving as the producers for this highly anticipated revival of a beloved musical.



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