Purlie Victorious, Starring Leslie Odom Jr. and Kara Young, to Broadcast on PBS May 24 | Playbill

Film & TV News Purlie Victorious, Starring Leslie Odom Jr. and Kara Young, to Broadcast on PBS May 24

The Tony-nominated Broadway revival of Ossie Davis' play is part of Great Performances' "Broadway's Best" lineup.

If you were upset you didn't get to see the now-Tony-nominated Broadway revival of Purlie Victorious when it was onstage, rest easy. The show is broadcast via PBS' Great Performances series May 24. Playbill previously debuted an exclusive clip from the play, which, in particular, showcases star Kara Young's comedic timing (and shows why she was nominated for a 2024 Tony Award). Watch the sneak peek above.

Ossie Davis' Purlie Victorious: A Non-Confederate Romp Through the Cotton Patch completed its revival run at the Music Box Theatre February 4. The PBS airing, part of "Broadway's Best," debuts at 9 PM ET (check local listings), and the film will be available to stream via PBS.org and the PBS app as well.

The work follows a traveling preacher, Purlie (Leslie Odom, Jr.), who returns to the plantation he grew up in to claim his family's inheritance from Ol’ Cap’n Cotchipee, the plantation owner. Purlie brings with him Lutiebelle (played by Young) to pretend to be his deceased cousin. The scene above shows Purlie and Lutiebelle rehearsing before Cap'n (Jay O. Sanders) comes in.

The Purlie revival received six 2024 Tony Award nominations, including Best Revival of a Play. Young made history for being the first Black performer to be nominated for a Tony Award three years in a row (2024 being her third nomination).

Great Performances' "Broadway's Best" series includes the Free Shakespeare in the Park production of Hamlet starring Ato Blankson-Wood, Audra McDonald's 2022 London Palladium concert, and 2023's My Favorite Things: The Rodgers & Hammerstein 80th Anniversary Concert, also from London. Hamlet and the Audra Mcdonald concert are now available to stream. My Favorite Things will premiere May 31 at 9 PM ET.

The PBS filming of Purlie Victorious is a production of The WNET Group, and is produced by Leslie Odom, Jr., Mitch Owgang, and Stephanie Dawson. Great Performances executive producer David Horn directed for television. Bill O'Donnell is Great Performances' series producer.

The film captures the revival's full original cast, including Odom, Jr. as Purlie, Kara Young as Lutiebelle Gussie Mae Jenkins, Heather Alicia Simms as Missy Judson, Billy Eugene Jones as Gitlow Judson, Noah Robbins as Charlie Cotchipee, Vanessa Bell Calloway as Idella Landy, Jay O. Sanders as Ol' Cap'n Cotchipee, Bill Timoney as The Sheriff, and Noah Pyzik as The Deputy.

Directed by Tony winner Kenny Leon, the production officially opened September 27, 2023, and closed February 4, following 23 previews and 151 regular performances.

Davis both wrote and starred in the 1961 original Broadway production, appearing alongside his wife, Ruby Dee. Davis and Dee would go on to reprise their performances in a 1963 film adaptation titled Gone Are the Days!

A musical adaptation premiered on Broadway in 1970, making Melba Moore a star (and a Tony winner) for her performance as Lutiebelle, singing the Gary Geld-Peter Udell score's most enduring hit, "I Got Love."

The production features scenic design by Derek McLane, costume design by Emilio Sosa, lighting design by Adam Honoré, sound design by Peter Fitzgerald, hair and wig and makeup design by J. Jared Janas, and original music by Guy Davis.

Check Out Photos of Purlie Victorious on Broadway

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