06-23-2018  6:28 pm      •     
The Skanner Report
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NEWS BRIEFS

AG Rosenblum Seeks Info from Oregonians

Oregon Attorney General seeks information on children separated from families at border ...

Community Forum: How Does Law Enforcement Interact With Vulnerable Populations?

Forum will focus on public safety and examine mental health and addiction issues ...

King County Council Recognizes Juneteenth

The Metropolitan King County Council recognizes a true 'freedom day' in the United States ...

Unite Oregon Hosts ‘Mourn Pray Love, and Take Action’ June 20

Community is invited to gather at Terry Schrunk Plaza at 6 p.m. on World Refugee Day ...

MRG Foundation Announces Spring 2018 Grantees

Recipients include Oregon DACA Coalition, Kúkátónón Children’s African Dance Troupe, Komemma Cultural Protection Association ...

Lawsuits allege racial profiling in Portland-area businesses

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Several African Americans are suing big-box stores and restaurants in Oregon, claiming employees at those places wrongly accused them of stealing because they were "shopping while black."A Portland law firm has filed five lawsuits alleging racial profiling at businesses in...

Wildfire near Maupin more than doubles in size

MAUPIN, Ore. (AP) — A wildfire burning brush and grass near Maupin in north-central Oregon has more than doubled in size to 36 square miles (93 square kilometers).Fire officials say Saturday's efforts will include the use of helicopters to protect Maupin.The wind-driven wildfire is mostly...

Alaska city honors Guardsmen killed in crash after '64 quake

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A month after the second most powerful earthquake ever was recorded, the Alaska port community of Valdez remained in ruins.A hulking Alaska National Guard cargo plane's mission April 25, 1964, was to deliver Gov. William Egan to oversee efforts to rebuild the town on...

The Latest: Alaska city unveils memorial to fallen Guardsmen

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The Latest on an Alaska city honoring Guardsmen killed in crash after 1964 earthquake (all times local):1:40 p.m.Four men who died on a humanitarian mission to help rebuild an Alaska town following the second most powerful earthquake ever recorded have been honored...

OPINION

How Washington’s 'School Achievement Index' Became School Spending Index

New assessment categorizes schools not by quality of education, but level of funding officials believe they should receive ...

Black Mamas Are Dying. We Can Stop It.

Congresswoman Robin Kelly plans to improve access to culturally-competent care with the MOMMA Act ...

Hey, Elected Officials: No More Chicken Dinners...We Need Policy

Jeffrey Boney says many elected officials who visit the Black community only during the election season get a pass for doing nothing ...

Juneteenth: Freedom's Promise Still Denied

Juneteenth is a celebration of the de facto end of slavery, but the proliferation of incarceration keeps liberation unfulfilled ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Lawsuits allege racial profiling in Portland-area businesses

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Several African Americans are suing big-box stores and restaurants in Oregon, claiming employees at those places wrongly accused them of stealing because they were "shopping while black."A Portland law firm has filed five lawsuits alleging racial profiling at businesses in...

Racist tropes in Ramadan TV satires anger black Arabs

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — In an attempt to capitalize on what's become a ratings bonanza for Arabic satellite channels during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, two comedies struck the wrong chord with audiences when their lead actors appeared in blackface.Criticism was swift on...

Chaos on the border inflames GOP's split with Latinos

When more than 1,000 Latino officials __ a crop of up-and-coming representatives from a fast-growing demographic __ gathered in Phoenix last week, no one from the Trump administration was there to greet them.It marked the first time a presidential administration skipped the annual conference of the...

ENTERTAINMENT

Give up after scandals? Television history shows otherwise

NEW YORK (AP) — Say this about TV creators in 2018 — they don't give up easily.Three current shows — "Roseanne," ''Transparent" and "House of Cards" — have been crippled by scandal, but each plans to continue without their disgraced stars."The bottom line is...

Ornate NYC theater, used for years as a gym, to be restored

NEW YORK (AP) — For years, Long Island University's basketball team played in a French Baroque movie palace in downtown Brooklyn.The gilded wall fountains, plastered statuettes and towering, one-of-a-kind Wurlitzer organ pipes of the historic Paramount Theater were preserved by the...

Vinnie Paul, co-founder, drummer of Pantera, dies at 54

Vinnie Paul, co-founder and drummer of metal band Pantera, has died at 54.Pantera's official Facebook page posted a statement early Saturday announcing his death. The label of Hellyeah, his most recent group, confirmed the death but neither statement mentioned Paul's cause of death.His real name...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

AP PHOTOS: Germany salvages campaign on Day 10 of World Cup

MOSCOW (AP) — Germany midfielder Toni Kroos scored a dramatic late winner to come from behind and beat...

1 dead after attack at huge rally for Ethiopia's new PM

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — A thwarted attempt to hurl a grenade at Ethiopia's reformist new prime...

Sanders says she was told to leave Virginia restaurant

WASHINGTON (AP) — White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders was booted from a Virginia restaurant...

Stars flock to the Dior debut of Kim Jones at Paris menswear

PARIS (AP) — In a week marked by big debuts, it was designer Kim Jones' turn at Dior Men on Saturday.The...

US moves 100 coffins to inter-Korean border for war remains

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — The U.S. military said it moved 100 wooden coffins to the inter-Korean border to...

1 dead after attack at huge rally for Ethiopia's new PM

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — A thwarted attempt to hurl a grenade at Ethiopia's reformist new prime...

Ta’Rea Campbell in Sister Act: The Musical
By Lisa Loving | The Skanner News

Campbell says the best part of the show is teaching the nuns to sing and dance. Photo by Joan Marcus

Sunday is the last night to catch the multi-talented Ta’rea Campbell, starring as Doloris Van Cartier in the Broadway Across America production of “Sister Act: The Musical,” at the Keller Auditorium. Previously appearing on Broadway in “The Book of Mormon,” “Little Shop of Horrors,” and starring as Nala in “The Lion King,” Campbell is burning up the road in her current role.

A native of Philadelphia who spent most of her formative years in acting and performance schools, Campbell is one of the hottest up and coming artists on the New York stage.

The Skanner News spoke with her about the show, her life and what she plans next.

The Skanner News: You have had an incredible career and you’re very young. Singing is difficult, dancing is hard, and acting is really hard. You are a triple threat! I just wanted to ask, how did you become a musical theater artist?

Ta’Rea Campbell: I became a musical theater artist in college, by accident.

I grew up in Philadelphia and I went to the high school for the creative and performing arts, it's called CAPA. I graduated with a major in acting there, and I had done a couple of musicals middle school and in high school. But I was really focused on being a straight actor, moving to New York and doing lots of plays.

When I got to MarymountManhattanCollege in New York City, a friend dared me to audition for a musical -- which I did not get, I think I sang the National Anthem or something – and the head of the musical theater department was quite impressed. She had really very few African American women in the program. She said, who are you, and where have you been? Please come be in the musical theater department.

I really didn’t have time in my schedule but essentially she let me audit a lot of the classes, so I graduated with a minor in musical theater. And after I graduated from college I began working at my college as an administrative assistant, but that didn't last very long because I quickly got a job, got my equity card, and I've been working ever since.

 

TSN: You’ve appeared off Broadway in a regional theater production of “Caroline, or Change.” It's a heartbreaking drama, completely different from the hilarious comic role that you're playing right now. Which roles are your dream roles?

Campbell: There are a couple. I think I'd like to be a mother first.

My second dream is that I would love to originate a role in a musical that is the story of human life, and not a black life. Very often as a minority woman you get cast in a show that is specifically written for a black person; as I get older that's really something that's important to me. And I would love to be in a movie version of “Sister Act, The Musical.”

 

TSN: “Sister Act” is considered to be one of the funniest movies of all-time. And of course the Broadway show one five Tony awards. What's the best part of the show?

Campbell: My favorite part is a number called “Raise Your Voice.” It's where Dolores is trying to teach the nuns how to sing, and they are really, really bad. And I get to listen to them sing poorly every night, on purpose, and it's really funny. And then I get to teach them dance moves. Because there's a lot of improv in the show, I get to make it something different every night, and they just have to follow along with what I'm doing. So for everybody, that keeps the show fresh.

 

TSN: I'm stuck on the fact that Whoopi Goldberg produced the show. It seems like a real labor of love, and she is, again, one of the smartest people in the United States in my own personal opinion. Why does that matter? What does she bring to the effort that maybe somebody else wouldn't have?

Campbell: She has a connection to the show, you know, she did the movie and she has a really sharp connection. I don't think she wanted to see it die and she saw a medium that would be marketable and successful and she was correct.

 

TSN: What's next for you? And have you ever thought about writing?

Campbell: That's very interesting that you asked that.

What's immediately next is that I'm planning my wedding. My husband and I eloped in November and we are planning a huge party celebration in September. It's quite difficult to do on the road and so, we have a lot of Skype business meetings as far as our wedding is concerned. and that's what I'm really planning on now.

But it's been a secret dream of mine to write a novel. I struggle with it all the time because it's difficult to get in that space of being totally creative while you're not at home. I'm sure it's fine for other people but I do think about writing every day.

Find out more about Campbell and get tickets to “Sister Act: The Musical” by clicking on this link.

 

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