Private industry readings of A Wonderful World, a new musical based on the life and songs of jazz legend Louis Armstrong, are presented September 19–20 at 2:30 PM in Manhattan.
Tony winner James Monroe Iglehart stars as the late Armstrong with Krystal Joy Brown as Alpha Smith, Patrice Covington as Lucille Wilson, Jennie Harney-Fleming as Lil Harden, Aisha Jackson as Daisy Parker, Matt Bogart as Joe Glaser, Kevin Dennis as Johnny Collins, DeWitt Fleming Jr. as Lincoln Perry, Gavin Gregory as King Joe Oliver, and Xavier McKnight as Young Louis.
The ensemble includes Rachel Schur Chase, Nigel Jamal Hall, Afra Hines, Joshua Keith, Krystal Imani Mackie, Barrett Martin, Aurelia Michael, Micah Jeremiah Mims, Alysha Morgan, Kevin Ricardo Tate, Sir Brock Warren, and Dori Waymer.
Conceived by Tony nominee Christopher Renshaw (Taboo) and Andrew Delaplaine, A Wonderful World has an original book by Aurin Squire (This Is Us) with songs recorded by Armstrong, plus original music, music arrangements, and orchestrations by Annastasia Victory and Michael O. Mitchell. Renshaw also directs with choreography by Rickey Tripp, associate direction by Christina Sajous, and associate choreography by Aurelia Michael.
Told from the perspective of the women in Armstrong’s life, A Wonderful World charts Armstrong’s journey from the birth of jazz in his native New Orleans through his international stardom. The musical also focuses on the complex history of race in America, leading up to the Civil Rights Era.
Miami New Drama produced the world premiere of A Wonderful World in December 2021.