Sarasota, Bradenton star Teresa Stanley returning to Broadway for 'Rock of Ages'

wtatangelo@bradenton.comDecember 13, 2012 

SARASOTA -- Sarasota and Bradenton star Teresa Stanley, who wowed audiences in the Manatee Players' 2005 production of "Sophisticated Ladies," is back on Broadway.

The Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe announced Wednesday that founding member Stanley has been cast in the role of Justice/Mother for the production of "Rock of Ages" at the Helen Hayes Theatre in New York City.

Her first performance will be Jan. 21. It is a role Stanley played on the first national "Rock of Ages" tour. She made her Broadway debut in "The Color Purple" production that ran from 2005 to 2008.

"We are very proud of our Teresa," said Nate Jacobs, artistic director of WBTT, in a statement issued by the Sarasota company.

"I met her when she was a small child but her big talent was even evident then. Her mother, Rosa Stanley, recognized it as well and let WBTT work with Teresa to develop her skills as a performer.

"It's very gratifying to see her come to Broadway for the second time in her career. We are so happy for all of her successes."

As Justice/Mother, Stanley plays a madam in a brothel. A love story, the musical takes place in Los Angeles of the 1980s in a place called the Bourbon Room with a time-appropriate hair metal score. In the film version, Justice/Mother was played by Mary J. Blige.

"Justice/Mother is a really great role," Stanley said in a statement issued by WBTT. "She's got a little edge to her, but at the same time, she's funny and very memorable. I'm really looking forward to being on stage again in this exciting and fun role. Looking back on my career, I have to say that everything I needed to get to this place was a result of those early years with WBTT."

She added, "The experience and training I received from Nate Jacobs really prepared me. I like to remind the Troupe members they are getting invaluable experience and if they listen and choose to use these skills professionally, they will go further than they ever imagined."

Wade Tatangelo, features writer/columnist, can be reached at 941-745-7057. Follow Twitter.com/wtatangelo.

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