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Color Purple

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By Mary Johnson, For The Baltimore Sun | September 20, 2012
Expecting the usual entertaining evening delivered by talented players at Toby's Dinner Theatre of Columbia, I found instead a life-affirming, near-religious experience at "The Color Purple" - a musical epic tracing a black woman's journey from abject subjugation in youth to achieving in maturity love, power and nobility. Adapted from Alice Walker's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel and Steven Spielberg's film, the musical follows Celie, from a poor girl in 1911 Georgia, at age 14 in her second pregnancy resulting from rape by her father, through her struggles until maturity.
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NEWS
By Mary Johnson, For The Baltimore Sun | May 22, 2013
In offering the regional premiere of the 2008 Tony Award-winning musical "In the Heights," Toby's Dinner Theatre of Columbia has reached its own new heights. Toby's production of "The Color Purple" last season garnered a record number of Helen Hayes Awards nominations, but the dinner theater raises the bar even higher with this musical celebrating a vibrant Latino community in New York City's Washington Heights. "In the Heights" was the first important Broadway musical with book (playwright Quiara Alegria Hudes)
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FEATURES
By Chris Kaltenbach, The Baltimore Sun | November 24, 2012
For Essex's Vanessa "Purple" Payne, being a big-time Ravens fan is all about the good she can do for the community. That, and making a lot of noise. Much of the time, the 48-year-old Payne, a chef at Geresbeck's Food Market in Middle River, can be found fulfilling her self-described mission: "I like to see nobody go hungry. " She organizes food drives, cooks and hands out lunches to hungry kids, even gets Ravens players to join in sometimes. Next Thursday, as she has for several years now, she'll be working at the annual Bea Gaddy Thanksgiving dinner.
NEWS
By Jacques Kelly, The Baltimore Sun | December 20, 2012
Josephine Grace "Joey" Gay, a 7-year-old child born in Columbia who died Dec. 14 in the Newtown, Conn., elementary school shooting, was recalled by her family for her "indomitable" spirit, love of the color purple and her generosity. In a statement released Thursday, her father, Robert "Bob" Gay, and her mother, the former Michele Hartman, acknowledged the "love and kindness pouring in. " They said, "We see how evil is defeated. " They said their daughter was "autistic and severely apraxic.
NEWS
By Jan Breslauer and Jan Breslauer,Los Angeles Times | April 27, 2008
Many books are made into films, and a few into genuinely good ones. Other literary works are given a second life as musicals. But it is the rare novel that inspires both a movie and a successful musical. Alice Walker's The Color Purple is one of the few. Performances "The Color Purple" runs Tuesday through May 18 at the Hippodrome Theatre, 12 N. Eutaw St. Showtimes vary. $34-$80. 410-547-7328 or france-merrickpac.com.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Mary Carole McCauley and Mary Carole McCauley,mary.mccauley@baltsun.com | July 2, 2009
When Fantasia Barrino opens her mouth as Celie in the national tour of The Color Purple and belts out the lyrics to "I'm Here," she could be talking about her own life. Like Celie, the heroine of Alice Walker's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, the teen-age Fantasia contended with rape and domestic abuse. And, like Celie, she launched a successful career against all odds when she won the third season of American Idol. Two best-selling albums followed, along with a memoir called Life Is Not a Fairy Tale that later was made into a movie for cable television.
NEWS
By Tiesha Higgins and Tiesha Higgins,Special to The Sun | April 1, 2007
More than three-quarters of a million people have seen The Color Purple on Broadway since it opened two years ago. And beginning this month, even more theatergoers will have the opportunity to see Oprah's Winfrey's presentation of The Color Purple, as a touring show will begin its run in Chicago. The play, based on the 1982 book by Alice Walker, centers on Celie, a black woman in the South in the early 1900s, as she lives through abuse at the hands of family members, explores her sexuality and, ultimately, finds her own strength.
NEWS
By J. WYNN ROUSUCK and J. WYNN ROUSUCK,SUN THEATER CRITIC | April 2, 2006
THREE YEARS AGO, DANCE Magazine named Bahiyah Sayyed Gaines one of "25 to Watch." At the time, Sayyed Gaines was a principal dancer with New York's Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, and the magazine praised her "fierce dramatic sense [that] can take you to the lowest abyss or to the heights of ecstasy." These days, audiences are watching Sayyed Gaines on Broadway in The Color Purple. And though the reviews don't single her out, well, that's to be expected. In making her Broadway debut, she sacrificed being an Alvin Ailey star to dance in the chorus of a musical.
NEWS
By Laura McCandlish and Laura McCandlish,Sun Reporter | January 12, 2007
At a pep rally in Bel Air, free purple Mardi Gras beads and hot dogs will be on hand for 1,000 fervent fans. In Towson, Catholic school students will spruce up their uniforms with purple socks and ties. And in Baltimore, employees with the zaniest outfits will win prizes at 1st Mariner Bank's headquarters. Prepare to see a violet tide wash over the region's workplaces and schools today. Countless "Purple Friday" celebrations are cropping up across the region today -- the eve of the game that will decide whether the Baltimore Ravens' season will continue.
FEATURES
By Karen Houppert and Karen Houppert,Special to The Sun | May 1, 2008
Staging a musical such as The Color Purple shares many of the challenges of, say, making a movie of Harry Potter. Most of the audience read and loved the book. Or, in the case of The Color Purple, they read the book and they loved the movie. These are hard acts to follow. First there was the 1983 epistolary novel by Alice Walker that was awarded the Pulitzer Prize. Then, there was the 1985 Steven Spielberg film, which featured stars such as Oprah Winfrey, Danny Glover, Whoopi Goldberg and Lawrence Fishburne.
FEATURES
By Chris Kaltenbach, The Baltimore Sun | November 24, 2012
For Essex's Vanessa "Purple" Payne, being a big-time Ravens fan is all about the good she can do for the community. That, and making a lot of noise. Much of the time, the 48-year-old Payne, a chef at Geresbeck's Food Market in Middle River, can be found fulfilling her self-described mission: "I like to see nobody go hungry. " She organizes food drives, cooks and hands out lunches to hungry kids, even gets Ravens players to join in sometimes. Next Thursday, as she has for several years now, she'll be working at the annual Bea Gaddy Thanksgiving dinner.
NEWS
By Mary Johnson, For The Baltimore Sun | September 20, 2012
Expecting the usual entertaining evening delivered by talented players at Toby's Dinner Theatre of Columbia, I found instead a life-affirming, near-religious experience at "The Color Purple" - a musical epic tracing a black woman's journey from abject subjugation in youth to achieving in maturity love, power and nobility. Adapted from Alice Walker's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel and Steven Spielberg's film, the musical follows Celie, from a poor girl in 1911 Georgia, at age 14 in her second pregnancy resulting from rape by her father, through her struggles until maturity.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Mary Carole McCauley and Mary Carole McCauley,mary.mccauley@baltsun.com | July 2, 2009
When Fantasia Barrino opens her mouth as Celie in the national tour of The Color Purple and belts out the lyrics to "I'm Here," she could be talking about her own life. Like Celie, the heroine of Alice Walker's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, the teen-age Fantasia contended with rape and domestic abuse. And, like Celie, she launched a successful career against all odds when she won the third season of American Idol. Two best-selling albums followed, along with a memoir called Life Is Not a Fairy Tale that later was made into a movie for cable television.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Jennifer Choi | June 5, 2008
Patti Austin, who won best jazz vocal album at this year's Grammys for her CD Avant Gershwin, hosts the Capital Jazz Fest at Merriweather Post Pavilion, which runs tomorrow through Sunday. The roster includes contemporary jazz artist Jonathan Butler, '70s diva Roberta Flack, jazz and R&B artist Diane Reeves and Grammy nominee Ledisi, who co-wrote and co-produced the music for The Color Purple. Singer Brian McKnight and saxophonist Boney James kick off the weekend. The venue is at 10475 Little Patuxent Parkway, Columbia.
FEATURES
By Karen Houppert and Karen Houppert,Special to The Sun | May 1, 2008
Staging a musical such as The Color Purple shares many of the challenges of, say, making a movie of Harry Potter. Most of the audience read and loved the book. Or, in the case of The Color Purple, they read the book and they loved the movie. These are hard acts to follow. First there was the 1983 epistolary novel by Alice Walker that was awarded the Pulitzer Prize. Then, there was the 1985 Steven Spielberg film, which featured stars such as Oprah Winfrey, Danny Glover, Whoopi Goldberg and Lawrence Fishburne.
NEWS
By Jan Breslauer and Jan Breslauer,Los Angeles Times | April 27, 2008
Many books are made into films, and a few into genuinely good ones. Other literary works are given a second life as musicals. But it is the rare novel that inspires both a movie and a successful musical. Alice Walker's The Color Purple is one of the few. Performances "The Color Purple" runs Tuesday through May 18 at the Hippodrome Theatre, 12 N. Eutaw St. Showtimes vary. $34-$80. 410-547-7328 or france-merrickpac.com.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Jennifer Choi | June 5, 2008
Patti Austin, who won best jazz vocal album at this year's Grammys for her CD Avant Gershwin, hosts the Capital Jazz Fest at Merriweather Post Pavilion, which runs tomorrow through Sunday. The roster includes contemporary jazz artist Jonathan Butler, '70s diva Roberta Flack, jazz and R&B artist Diane Reeves and Grammy nominee Ledisi, who co-wrote and co-produced the music for The Color Purple. Singer Brian McKnight and saxophonist Boney James kick off the weekend. The venue is at 10475 Little Patuxent Parkway, Columbia.
NEWS
By Sabdra D. Davis and Sabdra D. Davis,Knight-Ridder News Service | July 12, 1992
POSSESSING THE SECRET OF JOY.Alice Walker.Harcourt Brace Jovanovich.270 pages. $19.95. Young Tashi, a tribal African girl, mourns for her sister, Dura. She can't understand why Dura died, or why speaking of her has become unacceptable.She knows her sister's death is connected to the ritual Dura had seemed so excited about. Before the ceremony, villagers showered Dura with beads, bracelets and brightly colored cloth.Joy surrounded Dura and the Olinka custom of transforming girls into women.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 24, 2008
THEATER `Purple' on the road The Color Purple - the story of Celie, a young black woman who endures abuse from men in her life and finds strength through the women around her - won a Pulitzer Prize as a novel by Alice Walker and received 11 Academy Award nominations as a film by Steven Spielberg. Now, the critically acclaimed classic heads to the stage in musical form at the France-Merrick Performing Arts Center's Hippodrome Theatre, during its first North American tour. Gospel recording artist Jeannette Bayardelle plays Celie, and former American Idol contestant LaToya London plays her sister, Nettie.
NEWS
By John Woestendiek and Sam Sessa and John Woestendiek and Sam Sessa,SUN REPORTERS | April 24, 2008
The Color Purple, which affirmed that black-themed plays can draw huge black audiences to Broadway, will open at the Hippodrome Theatre next week with help from a city-backed campaign to attract a larger and more diverse crowd to Baltimore's stages. The push comes as large theater companies across the country are reaching out to black audiences as never before. Mainstream productions are taking on black themes more often, crossing racial lines in casting, and enlisting public officials and local church leaders to help to get the word out. Yesterday, Mayor Sheila Dixon and a group of clergy members held a news conference at City Hall to announce their "endorsement" of the production and unveil an unconventional marketing campaign for the musical, which begins a three-week run Tuesday at the France-Merrick Performing Arts Center.
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