Berkeley Repertory Theatre announces full casting for the World Premiere of new musical ‘GODDESS’

Berkeley Repertory Theatre has announced the full cast and creative team for the anticipated world premiere of the new musical, GODDESS, which runs in the Roda Theatre from 13 August to 25 September 2022.

From the critically acclaimed team that created New Yorks Free Shakespeare in the Park’s all-Black production of Merry Wives (as seen in HBO documentary Reopening Night), this exuberant new musical has music and lyrics by Michael Thurber, book by Jocelyn Bioh and is conceived and directed by Saheem Ali.

Inspired by the myth of Marimba, who created beautiful songs from her heartbreak, GODDESS is a joyful infusion of contemporary romance, ancient magic, and the irresistible vibes of African, jazz, and R&B music.

GODDESS cast members include: Abena (Rashida), Melessie Clark (Mosi – Grio Trio; U/S Siti), Rodrick Covington (Ahmed), Zachary Downer(Sameer – Moto Moto Ensemble), Amber Iman (Nadira), Grasan Kingsberry (Jaali – Moto Moto Ensemble; understudy Madongo, understudy Balozi, understudy Hassan), Kingsley Leggs (Hassan), Kecia Lewis (Siti), Isio-Maya Nuwere (Safiyah – Moto Moto Ensemble), Aaron Patterson (Yusef – Moto Moto Ensemble; understudy Omari, understudy Ahmed), Destinee Rea (Che Che), Phillip Johnson Richardson (Omari), Awa Sal Secka (Zawadi – Grio Trio; understudy Cheche & Rashida), Lawrence Stallings (Madongo), Teshomech (Tisa – Grio Trio; understudy Nadira), Quiantae Thomas (Amina – Moto Moto Ensemble; understudy Grio Trio), Wade Watson (Musa – Moto Moto Ensemble), and Reggie D. White (Balozi).



A mysterious singer arrives at Moto Moto, a steamy Afro-jazz club in Mombasa, Kenya. She casts an entrancing spell on everyone, including a young man who has returned home from studying in America. Will the big plans for his life — stepping into a political legacy and marrying his fiancée — be upended? Inspired by the myth of Marimba, the Goddess who created beautiful songs from her heartbreak, this is a rousing tale of romance, the supernatural, and the quest towards one’s truest self.

GODDESS features direction by Saheem Ali, music and lyrics by Michael Thurber, a book by Jocelyn Bioh, additional material by Mkhululi Z. Mabija, choreography by Darrell Grand Moultrie, music direction by Marco Paguia, scenic design by Arnulfo Maldonado, costume design by Dede Ayite, lighting design by Bradley King, sound design by Nevin Steinberg, projections and video design by Brittany Bland, wig design by Nikiya Mathis, illusions by Steve Cuiffo, and casting by Stewart/Whitley.

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