Grammy winner Ani DiFranco doesn't make her Broadway debut in the Tony-winning Hadestown until February 9, but fans can get a sneak peek of her Persephone in a recent performance with the musical's Tony-winning composer, Anaïs Mitchell.
Watch DiFranco, accompanied by Mitchell on guitar, sing Hadestown's "Our Lady of the Underground" in the video above.
DiFranco’s history with Hadestown began in 2010 when she
invited composer Mitchell to release the original
studio album of the hit musical on her label, Righteous Babe Records.
DiFranco originated the role of Persephone on the album and will now
step into that same role on Broadway at the Walter Kerr Theatre.
DiFranco said in an earlier statement, “I could not be more thrilled to be joining the cast of Hadestown. It’s like I get to rewind to my New York youth and follow the road not taken.”
Mitchell added, “I can’t really overstate the influence of Ani’s music and example on me as a young songwriter. Poetic, bold, radically emotive, and fun, she simply has been a mythic figure in my life, and I can’t think of anything more beautifully full circle than Ani playing the role of Persephone on Broadway. Grateful and awestruck."
While she has been known as the “Little Folksinger,” her music has embraced punk, funk, hip hop, jazz, soul, electronica, and even more distant sounds. Her most recent albums include 2021’s Revolutionary Love and the 2023 25th anniversary edition reissue of her seminal album Little Plastic Castle.
The Hadestown cast currently features Betty Who as Persephone,
Jordan Fisher as Orpheus, Tony winner Lillias White as Hermes, Phillip Boykin as Hades, and Solea Pfeiffer as
Eurydice. They are joined by Belén Moyano, Kay Trinidad, and Brit West
as the Fates. The chorus of Workers is played by Emily Afton, Malcolm
Armwood, Chibueze Ihumoa, Alex Puette, and Grace Yoo.
Singer-songwriter Mitchell’s folk- and jazz-infused musical layers the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice with that of Hades and Persephone, intertwining the actions—and consequences—of gods and mortals. Hadestown originally began as a theatrical concert performed by Mitchell.
The creative team features Tony-winning set designer Rachel Hauck, Tony-nominated costume designer Michael Krass, Tony-winning lighting designer Bradley King, Tony-winning sound designers Nevin Steinberg and Jessica Paz, choreographer David Neumann, and dramaturg Ken Cerniglia. Musical supervision and vocal arrangements are by Liam Robinson, with arrangements and orchestrations by Tony winners Michael Chorney and Todd Sickafoose.
The show, featuring a book and score by Mitchell, won eight 2019 Tony Awards: Best Director of a Musical (Rachel Chavkin), Best Featured Actor in a Musical (André De Shields), Best Lighting Design of a Musical (Bradley King), Best Scenic Design of a Musical (Rachel Hauck), Best Sound Design of a Musical (Jessica Paz and Nevin Steinberg), Best Orchestrations (Michael Chorney and Todd Sickafoose), Best Original Score (Mitchell), and Best Musical.