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Keke Palmer Will Play Broadway’s First Black Cinderella

As if making television history as the youngest person to ever host her own talk show wasn’t enough, Keke Palmer is making history yet again as Broadway’s first black Cinderella.

Following the announcement that she would take the starring role in Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella as soon as September 9th, Palmer took to Twitter Monday to express her excitement:

I’m sooooo excited to be doing broadway for the first time, as Cinderella!! DREAMS DO COME TRUE!!

— Keke Palmer (@KekePalmer) August 4, 2014

The actress is most notably known for her role in Akeelah and the Bee, Nickelodeon’s show True Jackson, VP and one of her most recent roles as Chilli in the VH1 biopic, CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story.

“She acts beautifully, she dances, she sings – she’s an amazing young woman,” Tony Award-winning producer Robyn Goodman told the Associated Press. “I think she’s going to be just so lovely.”

Of course, this isn’t the first time an African-American actress has donned the glass slippers as Cinderella; R&B singer Brandy played the role in a multicultural cast that included Whoopi Goldberg, Bernadette Peters and Jason Alexander in the 1997 made-for-TV movie based on Rodgers and Hammerstein’s play.

“I feel like the reason I’m able to do this is definitely because Brandy did it on TV,” Palmer says. “In me doing this, it shows everybody that everything is possible.”

This version of the fairy tale will bring a little more of a re-imagined twist to the original story, but will also include beloved songs composed by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II. 

While Keke Palmer winning the role of Cinderella is definitely a breakthrough, it’s only the latest of milestones reached by African-Americans on Broadway with Norm Lewis becoming the first black man to receive the title role in The Phantom of the Opera and Condola Rashad playing alongside Orlando Bloom as Juliet in Romeo and Juliet

Palmer is set to make her stage debut on this September, and we’ll be cheering her on every step of the way!

Danielle is a senior at the University of Georgia majoring in English and minoring in Sociology. You can usually find her dividing her time between being Campus Correspondent of Her Campus UGA, binge-watching Grey's Anatomy on Netflix and daydreaming about being one of Beyonce's backup dancers. If you want to know more about Danielle, you can follow her on Instagram (@danielleknecole_) or Twitter (@DanielleKnecole).
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