A STRANGE LOOP Producer Barbara Whitman and Michael R. Jackson discuss the road to Tony
A Strange Loop won the 2022 Tony Award for Best Musical.
During their visit to the winner’s room, the main producer of the show Barbara Whitman and composer Michael R. Jackson discussed their road to Broadway and the biggest prize of the night.
Of his longtime involvement with the show and the opportunity to share Jackson’s work with the world, Whitman said, “I saw a reading in 2016, right after Trump was elected, and it gave me hope, it gave me purpose, it gave me something to strive for. I never believed in its commercial appeal. I just thought we’d do the show Off- Broadway and that’s all we would do, and the show took off in the most beautiful way… We never ran the show, the show drove us. if the theater gods had watched over us until we finally got to this point. It really is the most incredible thing.”
Jackson, who won a Tony earlier in the evening for best book by a musical, added of his collaborator: “Let’s not overlook this woman’s common sense and clear-headed focus and don’t get distracted by anything, being a real partner. It made me want to be a real partner with her. So I have to surrender to this woman.
The Broadway cast of A Strange Loop includes Tony Award nominee Jaquel Spivey (Usher), Antwayn Hopper (Thought 6), Tony Award nominee L Morgan Lee (Thought 1), John-Michael Lyles (Thought 3), James Jackson, Jr. (Thought 2), Tony Award nominee John-Andrew Morrison (Thought 4) and Jason Veasey (Thought 5). A Strange Loop features set design by Arnulfo Maldonado, costumes by Montana Levi Blanco, lighting design by Jen Schriever, sound design by Drew Levy, cast by The Telsey Office/Destiny Lilly, with production manager Erin Gioia Albrecht.
Meet Usher: A Black, Queer Writer Writing a Musical About a Black, Queer Writer Writing a Musical About a Black, Queer Writer… Michael R. Jackson’s Pulitzer Prize-winning, supremely funny masterpiece , exposes the heart and soul of a young artist grappling with desires, identity and instincts he both loves and hates. Determined to free himself from his own self-perception, Usher wrestles with the thoughts in his head, brought to life on stage by a hilariously direct ensemble. Bold and sincere in its truth, A Strange Loop is the big, black, queer-ass Great American Musical for all.
Michael R. Jackson received the 2020 Pulitzer Prize for Drama for A Strange Loop.