The Color Purple’s Broadway revival is a must see tale of tragedy and triumph

Adrianna Hicks (Celie) and N'Jameh Camara (Nettie) and the North American tour cast of THE COLOR PURPLE. Photo by Matthew Murphy, 2017.

This post is brought to you in partnership with the Blumenthal Performing Arts. All opinions are our own.

The Color Purple has strong ties to Charlotte — in fact, scenes from the 1985 Tony Award winning movie were filmed right here in the Queen City. And this week, after 14 months on Broadway, the film will return to Charlotte in a stage play that the The New Times is calling, “a glory to behold.”

Based on Alice Walker’s 1982 Pulitzer-Prize winning novel, The Color Purple is a tale of womanhood, as young African-American women struggle for independence and freedom from the men who abuse them. 

Carrie Compere (Sofia) and the North American tour cast of The Color Purple. Photo by Matthew Murphy, 2017

Set in the early 1900s in rural Georgia, the story is told through a series of letters written by the story’s heroine, Celie. Throughout the her life, Celie writes to God and her sister Nettie about the lifetime of pain she has endured at the hands of her abusive father and her husband, Mister.

As Celie journeys through becoming a caretaker and mother at a young age, she is introduced to a string of resilient strong women who have managed to find a bit of freedom. Women like Shug Avery, a sultry blues singer, and Sofia, Celie’s stepson’s wife, who is anything but soft and submissive. 

Another noteworthy character is Shug’s husband Grady. He is played by Mekhai Lee, a graduate from Charlotte’s Northwest School of the Arts and winner of the Blumenthal’s 2014 Blumey Award for Best Actor.

Gavin Gregory (Mister) and J. Daughtry (Harpo) in the North American tour of THE COLOR PURPLE. Photo by Matthew Murphy, 2017.

Tony Award winning director John Doyle has carefully mastered the revival of this American classic, bringing to life the soul of each dynamic character a through a soulful melody of jazz, gospel, ragtime and the blues. 

Presented by the Blumenthal Performing Arts, The Color Purple will be playing at the Belk Theater July 10 – 15. Tickets begin at $25 and can be purchased here. 

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