Thursday, September 11, 2014

Broadway Star Will Mann visits Memphis, the Musical

Students from Memorial and G.W. Carver Magnet high schools were thrilled on Saturday, Sept. 6, by a surprise visit from Will Mann, who played the role of Bobby on Broadway and in the first national tour of Memphis, the Musical.
 The students from the two high schools in separate school districts collaborated on a rare joint production of the show last weekend. Mr. Mann flew in from New York City for the day to see the show, which is one of the few high school productions ever to be staged with white and African-American students cast in specific roles.

Show co-directors were Roshunda Jones of G.W. Carver Magnet High School and Nicole Morgan of Memorial High School. The Broadway star also met with the students before and after the show.

 “I’m so proud of what you’re doing,” he told the students at Memorial High. When he asked how many of the high school students were interested in pursuing theater as a professional career, many hands went up among the cast and technical crew.

 Mr. Mann advised them, “If you’re going to do it, do it all the way. Commit to it.” He warned that people would tell them they had to have a “backup plan,” but that he had purposely chosen to focus only on singing and acting in college. “If you have no choice but to succeed, then you will,” he told them.

Mann is currently playing Judah in the North American tour of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.


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