Milwaukee Repertory Theater
Press Release

Casting Announcement for Milwaukee Repertory Theater’s Production of “The Color Purple”

Milwaukee Repertory Theater announced casting today for The Color Purple

By - Jul 31st, 2014 11:59 am

July 31, 2014 – [Milwaukee] – Milwaukee Repertory Theater announced casting today for The Color Purple, the glorious musical saga which opens Friday, September 26, 2014 and runs from September 23 – November 2, 2014.   

The Color Purple will be directed by Artistic Director Mark Clements, who begins his fifth season at Milwaukee Repertory Theater. Following last season’s wildly successful production of Ragtime, Clements will reunite with his creative team to bring the hit musical based on Alice Walker’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel to life on the Quadracci Powerhouse stage. This is an unforgettable story of a woman who triumphs over adversity and discovers her own unique voice. Featuring a Grammy-nominated score with jazz, ragtime, gospel and blues music, The Color Purple will be performed with a cast of over 25.

The cast for The Color Purple includes: Allyson Kaye Daniel, the National Tour of The Color Purple, Smokey Joe’s Café (Florida Studio Theatre) and Elf (Pioneer Theatre Company); Zonya Love, Broadway: Celia in The Color Purple, First National Tour and Off-Broadway: Avenue Q and Blues in the Night (Milwaukee Rep); and Broadway veteran Nathanial Stampley, Broadway: The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess, The Color Purple and The Lion King, West End: The Lion King and National Tour: Ragtime.

Making their Milwaukee Rep debuts are: Gilbert L. Bailey II, Broadway: The Book of Morman, Scottsboro Boys (Center Theatre Group) and Dr. Suess’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas! The Musical (Madison Square Garden), National Tour: The Book of Morman; Darryl Reuben Hall, Broadway and National Tour: Godspell, Broadway: Cinderella and The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess (Lincoln Center); he is also the founder of Stage Aurora Theatrical Co.; Vanessa A. Jones-DuBose,Broadway:The Lion King and Caroline, or Change,TV: House of Cards, Unforgettable, Smash, Gossip Girl and What Would You Do?; Christina Acosta Robinson, My Fair Lady and The Unfortunates (Oregon Shakespeare Festival), Girl Shakes Loose Her Skin (New Dramatists) and Caroline, or Change (Syracuse Stage); Alexis J. Rogers, Jeff Award Winner for her role as Billie Holiday in Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill (Porchlight Music Theatre), Smokey Joe’s Café (New Theatre Restaurant) and Crowns and Ain’t Misbehavin’ (Goodman Theatre); Leonard E.  Sullivan, National Tours: Hairspray and Disney’s High School Musical; European

tours: A Chorus Line, Smokey Joe’s Café and And The World Goes ‘Round;and Stephanie Umoh, Broadway: Ragtime revival; Falling for Eve (The York), Pal Joey (Arkansas Repertory Theatre) and Johnny Baseball (A.R.T.)

Returning to Milwaukee Repertory Theater are: Melody Betts, A Christmas Carol and Ragtime (Milwaukee Rep), Ragtime, Thoroughly Modern Millie, The Boys from Syracuse and Seussical The Musical (Drury Lane Theatre); Jonathan ButlerDuplessis, From My Hometown, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Death of a Salesman and Cabaret (Milwaukee Rep); Carl Clemons-Hopkins, Ragtime and Blues in the Night (Milwaukee Rep), Eclectic Society and My Way (Walnut Street Theatre), Pericles (Georgia Shakespeare) and Avenue X, Rent and Little Shop of Horrors (11th Hour Theatre Company); Jessie Hooker, Ragtime (Milwaukee Rep), Footloose (Pittsburgh’s CLO), Sistas the Musical (Off-Broadway) and Company (Geva Theatre); Malkia Stampley, Taming of the Shrew (Manhattan Shakespeare Project), The Talented Tenth (Congo Square Theatre), Intimate Apparel, Sueño and A Christmas Carol (Milwaukee Rep); and Bethany Thomas, Ain’t Misbehavin’ and Ragtime (Milwaukee Rep), South Pacific (Marriott Theatre-Lincolnshire/Jeff Award winner), Hairspray (Drury Lane Theatre), Hair (Paramount Theatre) and Porgy and Bess (Court Theatre).

The cast for The Color Purple in Alphabetical Order:

Gilbert L. Bailey II – Harpo

Melody Betts – Darlene

Izayah Briggs – Ensemble

Jonathan Butler-Duplessis – Chief/Ensemble

Carl Clemons-Hopkins – Preacher/Guard/Buster

Allyson Kaye Daniel – Church Soloist

India Gurley – Ensemble

Darryl Reuben Hall – Ol’ Mister/Pa

Taurean Hogan – Ensemble

Jessie Hooker – Squeak

Vanessa A. Jones-Dubose – Jarene

Jennifer Latimore – Ensemble

Zonya Love – Celie

Zuri McGowan – Young Nettie

Chantae Miller – Young Celie

Nya – Ensemble

Esther O’Brien – Ensemble

Maya O’Day-Biddle – Ensemble

Christina Acosta Robinson – Shug Avery

Alexis J. Rogers – Ensemble

Malkia Stampley – Daisy/Ensemble

Nathaniel Stampley – Mister

Braylen Stevens – Young Harpo/Young Adam/Ensemble

Leonard E. Sullivan – Ensemble

Bethany Thomas –Sophia

Stephanie Umoh – Nettie

Vallea E. Woodbury – Doris

Dan Kazemi– Musical Director/Musician

The Color Purple will feature a small live orchestra.

2014/15 Artistic Intern Ensemble Members featured in The Color Purple include: India Gurley, Turean Hogan, Jennifer Latimore and Vallea E. Woodbury.

The children’s cast for The Color Purple includes: Izayah Briggs, Nya, Esther O’Brien, Maya O’Day-Biddle, Zuri McGowan, Chantae Miller and Braylen Stevens, A Raisin in the Sun (Milwaukee Repertory Theater).

The Creative Team for The Color Purple includes: Artistic Director/Director,Mark Clements; Music Director, Dan Kazemi±; Scenic Designer, Todd Edward Ivins±; Costume Designer, Alexander B. Tecoma;  Lighting Designer, Thomas C. Hase;Sound Designer, Barry G. Funderburg; Music Supervisor, John Tanner±; Choreographer, Amy Hall Garner; Dialect Coach, Jill Walmsley Zager; Casting Director, Stephanie Clapper Casting; Fight Director, Jamie Cheatham; Assistant Director,Philip Muehe; Stage Manager, Sarah Hoffmann and Assistant Stage Manager, Jennifer Lynn Anderson.

± Rep Associate Artist

To learn more about the cast and creative team for The Color Purple, please visit:

Single tickets for all The Color Purple performances are now on sale and can be purchased online at, by phone at 414-224-9490 or in person at The Rep’s Ticket Office at 108 E. Wells Street. Ticket prices start at $30.00.

Subscription prices for the 2014/15 Season range from $99 – $499. Packages available are the Ultimate 11-play package which includes the entire season spanning all three of The Rep’s performance spaces; Quadracci Powerhouse/Stackner 9-play package; Quadracci Powerhouse/Stiemke Studio 7-play package; Quadracci Powerhouse 5-play package; Stackner Cabaret 4-Play package as well as a Create Your Own Season package and Flex Passes. For additional information on subscription offerings, please contact The Rep’s Ticket Office at 414-224-9490 or visit

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