The highly anticipated stage musical adaptation of King Kong will officially open on Broadway tonight, November 8th! The production stars Christiani Pitts (BFA Music Theatre ’15) as King Kong’s quintessential damsel in distress, Ann Darrow. Tallahassee audiences may remember Pitts for her portrayal of Fraülein Sally Bowles in the School of Theatre’s 2014 production of Cabaret. While in Tallahassee, she was also featured in Company (Marta) and Ragtime (Sarah’s Friend). Pitts made her Broadway debut as Denise in A Bronx Tale: The Musical and later assumed the starring role of Jane. For more information on Christiani Pitts, click here
“I don’t take playing the role of Ann Darrow lightly,” Pitts told ESSENCE earlier this summer while promoting the musical. “This is an iconic role and no one that looks like me has never got[ten] a chance to do [it].”
“Imagine what Anne had to sacrifice as a woman of color in 1930, who dreams of being a Broadway star. When you think about all her obstacles, it’s insane and I think that it brings so much more color and truth to the story that wasn’t there before,” she said.
“What I am learning in playing Ann Darrow, is how to take the things that make me different, to walk in them, to stride with power instead of being ashamed [of] it — she’s a superhero.”
To read the full interview with Essence Magazine, click here.
In an article with BroadwayDirect, book writer Jack Thorne (Harry Potter and the Cursed Child) expressed his excitement about the official casting saying, “This is an epic story but also a really intimate one – about the limits of ambition and the cages we’re put in. Thankfully, in Christiani and Eric we’ve two remarkable talents who’ll lead our incredible company beautifully.” The musical also features a score by Marius de Vries (La La Land and Moulin Rouge) and songs by Eddie Perfect (the Broadway-aimed Beetlejuice musical) with direction by Drew McOnie. Based upon the novel and subsequent movie adaptations, “The story follows a young actress and a maverick filmmaker as they voyage from the bustling streets of 1930s New York to an uncharted island to capture the greatest wonder the world has ever seen.” At the center of this 21st-century reimagining is a 20-foot-high, 2,000-pound gorilla.