Keke Palmer continues to break ground as she takes up the role of Cinderella on the big stage. It will be the first time the fairytale character will be portrayed as a black woman on Broadway, and the actress’ first time taking up the stage professionally.
Keke has been wowing the public since her debut leading role in Akeelah and the Bee (2006). Since then she has taken both the big and small screen by storm, and at 20 years old she even became the youngest person in history to host a talk show. The actress, now 20, has surely become a star worth looking up to, especially for young girls in the black community, so it’s no real surprise that she has been given this very special role.
And yet, she does have a special thank you to give out. Keke admitted to the Associated Press, “I feel like the reason I’m able to do this is definitely because Brandy did it on TV.”
Back in 1997, the singer Brandy stood front and centre alongside other greats such as Whitney Houston and Whoopi Goldberg for a TV movie version of the tale. And of course, it likely owes some of its success to The Wiz (1978), which carved a path for re-creating classics with an all black cast as forms of both inclusion and social activism. Such projects afford young black viewers an opportunity to better identify with some of their all-time favourite characters. It’s truly a wonderful opportunity for Keke, and right up her alley.
Obviously aware of this, Keke tweeted, “I’m sooooo excited to be doing broadway for the first time, as Cinderella!! DREAMS DO COME TRUE!!”
The talented young star, who can act, sing, and even dance, will be moving elegantly across the stage in a pair of glass slippers crafted by Stewart Weitzman, on September 9th at the Broadway Theatre.
“Theater offers so much more than I haven’t been able to access doing film and TV and everything like that,” she said. “I’m very excited to learn all that it has to offer – that focus and that dedication to perform at a certain level every night.”