Syncing Ink Officially Opens NYC Return May 19 | Playbill

Off-Broadway News Syncing Ink Officially Opens NYC Return May 19

Playing The Apollo Stages at the Victoria, the encore run features much of the work's original cast, including three-time Tony Nominee Kara Young.

Kara Young Michaelah Reynolds

Hip-hop play Syncing Ink is back in NYC with its original cast, including three-time Tony nominee Kara Young, fresh off her now-Tony nominated performance in Broadway's Purlie Victorious. Young is the first Black performer to receive three consecutive Tony nominations, and only the sixth performer to do so. The production officially opens at The Apollo Stages at the Victoria May 19 after beginning previews May 7.

Created by playwright NSangou Njikam, the work celebrates hip-hop and Yoruba culture with a new, original score by producer and emcee Kyleel "Proda'' Rolle and choreography by Adesola Osakalumi. The play, which originally ran at The Flea (a co-production with Houston, Texas' Alley Theatre) in 2017, follows the coming-of-age journey of Gordon Morris, who is certain deep down that he's destined to become an emcee, but isn't sure if he can rhyme. Rooted in traditional Yoruba culture, Gordon embraces the power of his words for himself, his family, and the fate of hip-hop itself. Awoye Timpo is directing.

"The power of the word is the power to change our reality. Syncing Ink is a ceremony that lifts our voices and connects us to the source of that power. It calls us to embrace our destiny, feel our power, and remember who we truly are. In this 50th year of the culture of hip-hop, I am honored to join my fellow masters of the ceremony as we honor our roots and step into the Victoria to spit fire," says Njikam in a statement.

Joining Young as Sweet Tea are fellow original cast members Njikam as Gordon, Adesola Osakalumi (Skeleton Crew) as Baba, Nuri Hazzard as Jamal, Elisha Lawson as Ice Cold, and McKenzie Frye (for colored girls who have considered suicide / when the rainbow is enuf) as Mona Lisa. Understudies Dennis A. Allen II and Angela Christine round out the company.

Though the cast is returning, the staging is new, with a completely new creative team. This staging features choreography by Osakalumi, spiritual advisement and cultural direction by Chief Ayanda Clarke, scenic design by Jason Ardizzone-West, lighting design by Alan C. Edwards, sound design by G Clausen, and costume design by Ty Hunter. Nathan Gehan and ShowTown Productions serve as executive producers. ShowTown Theatricals provides general management, and Sybil R. Williams is serving as dramaturg.

Syncing Ink is produced by Victoria Weinberg of Just V Productions, Ezra Ezzard of Artification, Richard Fearn, Willette and Manny Klausner, Gabrielle Palitz, Simon Turner, and Q'd Up Productions.

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