KeKe Palmer to Play Broadway’s First African-American Cinderella

Actress KeKe Palmer will be taking over the lead role in the stage musical Cinderella next month, making her the first African-American to play the role on Broadway.

(In a similarly landmark turn, singer Brandy played Cinderella in the 1997 TV movie, costarring Whitney Houston as her fairy godmother.)

Asked how she was celebrating the awesome career coup, however, the 20-year-old star told Vanity Fair on Friday, “I don’t really celebrate. And besides, I still don’t believe it is real!”

Hmm, that last part sounds like over-the-moon enthusiasm to us! And of course, she may have celebrated since then.

The Just Keke host’s debut will be Sept. 9, so of course she will be spending the next month—a period of time that includes her 21st birthday—rehearsing.

Palmer will be replacing Cindy Paige Faure in the role of the titular heroine who goes from family servant to (spoiler alert) Prince Charming’s see-through-footwear-rocking bride over the course of a few hours.

Carly Rae Jepsen also enjoyed a three-month run as Cinderella, taking her final bow in June. The revival of the Rodgers and Hammerstein-penned musical premiered in March 2013.

Growing up, Palmer told VF, she “always had an idea to approach Broadway for an audition.” Similarly, when asked by back in 2012 if her love of singing combined with her love of acting included a desire to perform on Broadway, Keke said, “That would be really fun.”

In addition to scoring her own BET talk show, Palmer also recently appeared on the small screen in Showtime’s Masters of Sex and the Emmy-nominated Lifetime movie The Trip to Bountiful.


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