A Strange Loop star L Morgan Lee is surrounded by the paraphernalia often found on a dressing room table: makeup, a foam head for a wig, mementos, and other personal and professional items that she has accumulated over time.
Watch the Tony nominee transform into Thought 1 for the emotional musical, which takes audiences inside the mind of a young, Black, gay theatre writer. Photographer Michael Kushner captures Lee at her dressing table as part of The Dressing Room Project, a series he began in 2016 documenting performers in their dressing rooms as they get ready.
READ: A Strange Loop's L Morgan Lee Becomes the First Openly Trans Tony-Nominated Performer
The Pulitzer Prize- and Tony-winning musical follows Usher, a young, Black, gay theatre writer grappling with his toxic inner thoughts while trying to write a musical about a young, Black, gay theatre writer grappling with his toxic inner thought while trying to write a musical about... and on it goes.
A Strange Loop opened on Broadway at the Lyceum Theatre April 26 after previews that began April 14. The musical features a book, music, and lyrics by Michael R. Jackson, who made his Broadway debut with the production and won the Tony for Best Book.
Lee is joined in the cast by Jaquel Spivey in the leading role of Usher, Antwayn Hopper, James Jackson, Jr., John-Michael Lyles, John-Andrew Morrison, and Jason Veasey. Edwin Bates, Kyle Ramar Freeman, Jon-Michael Reese, and Mars Rucker serve as understudies.
Director Stephen Brackett (Be More Chill) leads a creative team that also includes choreographer Raja Feather Kelly (Suffs), scenic designer Arnulfo Maldonado, costume designer Montana Levi Blanco, lighting designer Jen Schreiver, sound designer Drew Levy, hair, wig, and makeup designer Cookie Jordan, and music supervisor Rona Siddiqui. Orchestrations are by Charlie Rosen, vocal arrangements by Jackson, and casting by The Telsey Office's Destiny Lilly. Tomoko Akaboshi is music coordinator, and Chelsea Pace is intimacy director.
Check out the full gallery below to see how Lee prepares for the role: