From TikTok to Broadway: Nichelle Lewis Lands Lead Role In ‘The Wiz’
TikTok has turned numerous people into stars on its platform, and yet another one has emerged. This time the social media sensation is headed to Broadway!
According to The Associated Press, the newest Dorothy for the next Broadway production of “The Wiz” is a 24-year-old named Nichelle Lewis, who has appeared on the road in a production of “Hairspray” and competed on “American Idol.” But her big break seems to have come via TikTok, where she was discovered by the casting agents of the Broadway musical.
Lewis performed a rendition of the famous song “Home” from “The Wiz” on the platform, and the casting agents came across it and invited her to audition.
“I’m so excited that this is a part of my story, because I feel like there’s so many people out there who started out with such a small following and I feel like they’re hard on themselves about it,” Lewis said. “But I’m like, ‘You never know who’s watching those videos.’ I never knew that ‘The Wiz’ was looking at my videos.”
For the few who do not know, “The Wiz” is in effect the Black version of the classic “The Wizard of Oz.” Superstars who played the lead role of Dorothy included Diana Ross, in a film version in 1978, and Stephanie Mills, in the first Broadway production in 1975. Now, it’s time for Lewis to shine.
“It’s been a pretty crazy journey,” Lewis expressed to The Associated Press. “I’m honored to be making my debut as Dorothy. I know I’m following in some really big footsteps.”
Before hitting the stage on Broadway, Lewis will star in the national touring show of “The Wiz” that’s taking place this fall. The production is expected to debut on Broadway sometime next year.
There are some familiar names taking part in this production. Wayne Brady and Alan Mingo Jr. will be sharing the role of The Wiz. Deborah Cox is playing Glinda, Kyle Ramar Freeman is taking on the role of the Lion, Phillip Johnson Richardson is the Tin Man, and Avery Wilson will have the Scarecrow role.
The musical will have shows in Baltimore this fall before hitting Broadway.
Lewis won a Golden Ticket on “American Idol” but didn’t advance to Hollywood. Now she will take the Yellow Brick Road to Broadway in 2024.