A private, invitation only industry reading of the new musical Mandela will be held on Thursday, March 14 and Friday, March 15, 2019. Mandela has music and lyrics by two South African composer/lyricists signed to Sony/ATV Music Publishing, Greg Dean Borowsky and Shaun Borowsky, with a book by Laiona Michelle (Little Girl Blue: The Nina Simone Musical). This reading is directed by Schele Williams (Rent, Motown: The Musical), with music direction by Alvin Hough, Jr. (Once On This Island). Fifth Estate Entertainment (Nathan Gehan/Jamison Scott) serves as general manager for the reading. The reading will be attended by Nandi Mandela, Nelson Mandela’s granddaughter, on behalf of the Mandela family who have officially partnered with the show. The company includes a combination of both South African and American performers.
Mandela stars Quentin Earl Darrington (Once On This Island, CATS) as Nelson Mandela, Sasha Allen (Hair, Pippin) as Winnie Mandela, and Jeremy Landon Hays (The Phantom of the Opera, Les Miserables) as the Warden. The cast also includes Emmanuel Castis (Jersey Boys), Carrie Compere (The Color Purple, Holler If Ya Hear Me), Alvin Crawford (The Lion King, Miss Saigon), Emerson Davis (Once On This Island, Annie Warbucks), Ntomb'khona Dlamini (The Lion King, Sarafina), Jason Forbach (The Phantom of the Opera, Les Miserables), Alexa Green (Wicked), Bonita Hamilton (The Lion King), Atandwa Kani (Black Panther, Dangerous House), Elijah Ahmad Lewis (Motown the Musical), Micailah Lockhart (My Love Letter to Broadway with Kristen Chenoweth, PBS' American Songbook), JayMcKenzie (Beautiful, Memphis), Phindi Mkhizwe-Wilson (The Lion King), Danny Rothman (Sweeney Todd, Loophole), Antoine L.S mith (Carousel, The Color Purple), Vishal Vaidya (Groundhog Day, How To Succeed...), Antonio J. Watson (This Ain't No Disco), and Mia Mei Williams (Once On This Island).
Mandela explores the epic story of Nelson Mandela’s political struggle to lead South Africa out of Apartheid into democracy and freedom, as well as the exceptionally powerful, personal story of what Madiba and his loved ones endured as a family throughout the years of struggle for the liberation of South Africa.