Hezekiah Walker Better


Theater

July 11, 2016

Staged: BeBe Winans’ “Born For This” Opens In DC

Scene from Born For This

AlwaysAList.com was invited to opening night of “Born for This: The BeBe Winans Story” at Arena Stage in Washington, DC.

“Born for This” is an engaging musical that gives insight into the journey of Benjamin “BeBe” Winans and Priscilla “CeCe” Winans. The singing siblings, who come from Gospel Music’s Winans dynasty, became breakout stars on Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker’s Praise The Lord (PTL) Network based in Pineville, SC.   The two would go on to become a groundbreaking music duo who would achieve huge crossover success.

Juan Winans as BeBe Winans, Kiandra Richardson as Whitney Houston and Deborah Joy Winans as CeCe Winans. (Photo by: Greg Mooney/courtesy Alliance Theatre)

Juan Winans as BeBe Winans, Kiandra Richardson as Whitney Houston and Deborah Joy Winans as CeCe Winans. (Photo by: Greg Mooney/courtesy Alliance Theatre)

The musical shows BeBe & CeCe deal with the challenges of racism working on PTL; facing jealously from their already successful older brothers, The Winans; and explains how they became close friends with the late, great Whitney Houston.

Starring Juan Winans (BeBe) and Deborah Joy Winans (CeCe), the children of Carvin Winans (The Winans) capture the essence of their famous aunt and uncle in the musical. Deborah Joy, who currently stars in OWN’s new hit drama “Greenleaf,” previously played her Aunt CeCe in Lifetime’s “Whitney” movie about the life of Houston.

One of the highlights of the show is actress Kirsten Wyatt, who is hilarious in her impeccable portrayal of eccentric televangelist Tammy Faye.

BeBe Winans & Charles Randolph Wright (Photo by: Cameron Whitman/courtesy Arena Stage)

BeBe Winans & Charles Randolph Wright (Photo by: Cameron Whitman/courtesy Arena Stage)

The production features mostly-original songs by BeBe, who also co-wrote the show’s script with director Charles Randolph-Wright (“Motown The Musical“/”Porgy and Bess”).

Grammy-winning Gospel superstar Donald Lawrence serves as music supervisor for “Born for This.”

Rounding out the cast for “Born For This” are Chaz Pofahl (Jim Bakker); Kiandra Richardson (Whitney Houston); Nita Whitaker (Mom Winans); Milton Craig Nealy (Pop Winans); Dyllon Burnside (Michael Winans/Howard) Desmond Sean Ellington (Carvin Winans/Alvin Love); Brad Raymond (Ronald Winans); Michael Stiggers (Marvin Winans); Nick Morrett (Bob); Alison Whitehurst (Penny); Kurt Boehm (Jimmy Ray) and Gracie Jones (ensemble).

The company of "Born For This" (Photo by: Cameron Whitman/courtesy Arena Stage)

The company of “Born For This” (Photo by: Cameron Whitman/courtesy Arena Stage)

In addition to spotting the show’s choreographer Warren Adams at opening night, those in attendance included Marvin Winans; Cathy Hughes (Radio One/TV One); Lisa Kimmey-Winans (Out of Eden); music producer Daniel Weatherspoon (Donald Lawrence/Karen Clark-Sheard); Byron Nichols (Richard Smallwood & Vision); Sarah Hearn (Examiner); and Shiba Haley (National Museum of African American History & Culture).

“Born for This: The BeBe Winans Story” will play at Arena Stage until August 28, 2016.

Lisa Kimmey-Winans, Jawn Murray, daughter Sophia, Deborah Joy Winans & Juan Winans

Lisa Kimmey-Winans, Jawn Murray, daughter Sophia, Deborah Joy Winans & Juan Winans

 






0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


*

Why ask?

What is 10 + 3 ?
Please leave these two fields as-is:
IMPORTANT! To be able to proceed, you need to solve the following simple math (so we know that you are a human) :-)