"Let a Big Black Lady Stop the Show!"

Categories: Theater

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Capathia Jenkins from "Newsies." Photo: Walter McBride

That's a song Capathia Jenkins (above) sang in Broadway's Martin Short: Fame Becomes Me a few years ago, spoofing the way so many musicals rely on a plus-size African American powerhouse to save the evening with a big, belty number.

And naturally, she stopped the show as she sang it.

And she's at it again.

Capathia is one of the highlights of Newsies, playing Medda Larkin, the chanteuse who helps the (very) striking boys, even serving up a lyric that's the Disney show's single racy reference.

(But she also plays a nun. Lordy, there's a lot of religion on Broadway's heathen stages these days!)

And that's not all the big, black, female wailing this season.

In Ghost: The Musical, DaVine Joy Randolph plays Oda Mae Brown, the Whoopi Goldberg fake psychic character whose mission is to inject life into the afterlife.

And over at Leap of Faith--yep, more religiosity--we go from Oda Mae to Ida Mae because I hear there happens to be a gospelicious character named Ida Mae Sturdevant, played by Kecia Lewis-Evans.

Three of anything makes for a trend.

Four would make it amazing, so I'm publicly urging the ladies over at Porgy and Bess to start packing on more poundage.

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Kecia Lewis-Evans from "Leap of Faith." Photo: Walter McBride

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Da'Vine Joy Randolph from "Ghost." Photo: WalterMcBride


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