Daren A. Herbert Play To See Canadian Debut

August 19, 2014

daren a herbert bermuda actor 2Bermudian actor Daren A. Herbert has been cast in the leading role of Burrs, a vaudeville star who performs in blackface, in the upcoming stage production of The Wild Party – a role that has traditionally been played by a white actor.

The production, which has long been difficult to put together in either the United States or Canada due to complex copyright laws surrounding already-made versions of the show, will see previews begin on on February 20, 2015 at Toronto’s Berkeley Street Downstairs Theatre.

The Toronto Star said, “This story of a drug-riddled debauch that turns violent thanks to racial and sexual undercurrents made Broadway history in 2000 when two separate musical versions of the poem opened in New York mere months apart.

“But for a long time, due to the complex differences in public domain laws between Canada and the United States, no one was allowed to produce either version.

“The leading role of Burrs, a vaudeville star who performs in blackface, has traditionally been played by a white actor, but producer Mitchell Marcus is casting Daren A. Herbert, who is black.”

“There was a tradition of black performers like Bert Williams, who blacked up further to please the white public of the time,” Mr. Marcus said.

“Marcus is casting black actress Cara Ricketts as Burrs’ partner, Queenie.

“Other leading roles will be played by Lisa Horner, Sterling Jarvis, and Sara-Jeanne Hosie.”

Daren A. Herbert most recently starred in a production of Welcome Back to Harlem: A Hellfighter’s Story.

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Comments (5)

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  1. Congratulation Daren in “crossing the invisible line” by taking the lead role…Dat-a-bie’ May nothing but success lay ahead of you young man :-)

  2. PBanks says:

    Interesting backstory about this particular production.

    Congrats to young Mr. Herbert on nailing another lead role.

  3. YesI! says:

    Congrats Darren…from Youth 2 Youth days -yup this was your vibe. I felt excited and proud when I saw you in Titanic as well. All the best to you…continue to stay focused and pressed forward.

  4. Ride says:

    Congratulations!

  5. Oh My says:

    Just oozing with pride for this young man.
    Congrats. Darren.
    I’m Proud to be a Bermudian especially when it comes to people like you doing what they love and doing it well enough that you can see the progress. Well done