Who Should Be The Next Mama Rose?
Gypsy, as many people know, is one of my favourite shows and in my opinion is a very versatile show in which the characters are presented very differently every time it is produced. The last major production here in the UK was with Ria Jones in 2019 in Manchester and the last major Broadway production was with Patti LuPone in 2008. This show never stays away for long and I think a Broadway revival could be on the cards post-pandemic (even though a revival isn't really necessary!) . So let's have a look at 5 potential future Mama Roses we could see gracing the stage.
I have made myself honorary president of the imaginary Audra4Gypsy campaign. McDonald is the natural successor for this role, being one of Broadway's most decorated performers and most versatile actors. Though known for her soprano notes, Audra has an amazing belt that is very rarely seen and this would be a perfect chance for her to showcase this. It would also make Audra the first black actress to play Mama Rose on a Broadway stage - something that is long overdue.
Lindsay Mendez is best known for her turn as Elphaba in Wicked and her recent Tony-winning performance as Carrie Pipperidge in Carousel. Though only 37, I would LOVE to see her tackle this role in the years to come. She has some of the finest vocals on Broadway and has the acting skills to boot. Mendez really is a strong contender; the only thing not on her side is that she isn't as big a name as some would want as Rose.
Stephanie J. Block
I've recently had a bit of a SJB phase and am obsessed with this woman's work. Her Reno Sweeney is the best. Anyway, I really do think that Block would make a fantastic Rose. She can act. She can sing. She can dance. She can do everything, and she definitely has the emotional gravitas for this role. She also has a Tony Award under her belt now too - a step in the right direction!
Sharon D. Clarke
Powerhouse vocalist Sharon D. Clarke is someone who I think would make a fabulous Rose. The Oliver Award winning actress is one of the UK's best loved theatre actresses and has an extremely vast career ranging from Shakespeare to We Will Rock You. I do think that Sharon could bring something special to this role and I'd love to see it. She is reviving her award winning role in Caroline, Or Change ASAP and fingers crossed it will be her big American breakthrough.
Now, Sutton Foster may not seem the obvious choice for Rose and this is a controversial one as she usually play more comical and upbeat parts on the stage. However, the two-time Tony winner deserves her shot. I think it would be a great oppurtunity to see Sutton's more serious side and prove everyone wrong.
A Rose that should've been: Marin Mazzie
Marin Mazzie would have been a jaw dropping Mama Rose. She had some of the best vocals on Broadway and was a beautiful actress too. Mazzie had so much more to give and it is heartbreaking that she isn't with us anymore. I can just imagine how amazing her 'Roses Turn' would've been.
Please let me know below who you would love to see tackle the ultimate stage mother that is Mama Rose!