Backstage Pass with Lia Chang

Lia Chang: André De Shields Stars in Archbishop Supreme Tartuffe

ANDRE DE SHIELDS. Photo by Lia Chang

André De Shields Photo by Lia Chang

André De Shields plays the title character in the Classical Theatre of Harlem’s production of Archbishop Supreme Tartuffe by Alfred Preisser & Randy Weiner, at The Clurman @ Theatre Row in New York, from June 12 – July 19, 2009.  Opening night is June 25.

Archbishop Supreme Tartuffe is an original play with music, inspired by Moliere’s great comic classic and informed by the gloriously unorthodox ministries of Reverend Ike, Daddy Grace and Rasputin.  Set within a fabulously theatrical Harlem Renaissance-era “church,” the play explores the outrageously creative criminal mind of the title character through a series of songs, dances, sermons and feats of divine inspiration. Helmed by Alfred Preisser, the cast also stars Ted Lange and Kim Brockington, and features Lawrence Street, Reji Woods, Tyrone Davis, Jennifer Akabue, Gina Marie Rivera, Kisa Willis, Charletta Rozzell, Soneelea Nankani, Jabari Brisport and Gerron Atkinson.

The multiple Tony Award nominee has appeared in numerous Broadway, Off Broadway and regional productions as well as television and film, and just completed a run on Broadway in Michael Jacobs’ Impressionism, starring Joan Allen and Jeremy Irons. On Broadway, he appeared in the original casts of The Wiz, Ain’t Misbehavin’ (Emmy Award), Play On!, The Full Monty and Prymate. He also conceived, co-wrote, directed, and starred in Haarlem Nocturne. In 2007, he won the coveted OBIE Award for Sustained Excellence in Performance. His television credits include Cosby, Sex and the City, Law & Order, Lipstick Jungle and Life on Mars.

Archbishop Supreme Tartuffe will play Tuesdays 7pm, Wednesday through Friday evenings at 8pm, Saturdays st 3pm & 8pm, and Sundays at 3pm & 7pm. Tickets will be $51.25 (including restoration fee) and can be purchased at or by calling 212.279.4200. The Clurman Theatre is located at Theatre Row, 410 West 42nd St., between 9th and 10th Aves.
Click here to purchase or 212.279.4200

Group Rates & Reservations Email:

From the Classical Theatre of Harlem stage, De Shields heads outdoors to the Delacorte Theater, where he’ll portrays Teiresias in The Public Theater’s Shakespeare in the Park production of The Bacchae from August 11-30, with an opening on August 24. Joanne Akalaitis will direct.

Presented in a translation by Nichoas Rudall, and featuring original music by Philip Glass, the production re-imagines the classic story about what happens when a government attempts to outlaw desire.

The cast will feature George Bartenieff as Cadmus, Jonathan Groff as Dionysus, Karen Kandel as Chorus Leader, Joan MacIntosh as Agave, Steven Rishard as Cowherd, and Rocco Sisto as Messenger. The Greek chorus will include Marisa Echeverria, Colleen Fitzpatrick, Jennifer Ikeda, Jennifer Nikki Kidwell, Alexa Kryzaniwsky, Vella Lovell, Nana Mensah, Ereni Sevasti, Elena Shaddow, Han Tang, and Idara Victor.

Andre De Shields as Frederick Douglass (Photo by Lia Chang)

André De Shields as Frederick Douglass (Photo by Lia Chang)

Over the Labor Day weekend, De Shields will embody Frederick Douglass in his solo show Mine Eyes Have Seen The Glory: From Douglass to Deliverance, at the Yard in Chilmark, Martha’s Vineyard on September 4, 5, and 7.

Conceived, researched and written by De Shields, in Mine Eyes, he explores the life and achievements of the Great Emancipator, Frederick Douglass. Douglass began his life as a slave, and through heroic efforts, became one of America’s most important and historically influential African American leaders.

For more information, visit

Click on the arrow below for an excerpt of Andre as Frederick Douglass.

From October 28-November 15, De Shields will star in David Mamet’s two-hander A Life in the Theatre, directed by Robert O’Hara at the Alliance Theatre in Atlanta, Ga.

For tickets and information, call 404-733-4600 or visit

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All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2011 Lia Chang Multimedia. All rights reserved. All materials contained on this site are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Lia Chang. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content. For permission, please contact Lia at

Lia Chang  Photo by Brianne Michelle Photography

Lia Chang Photo by Brianne Michelle Photography

Lia Chang is an actor, performance and fine art botanical photographer, and an award-winning multimedia journalist.

As a photographer and videographer, Lia collaborates with artists, organizations and companies in establishing their documentary photo archive and social media presence. She has been documenting her colleagues and contemporaries in the arts, fashion and journalism since making her stage debut as Liat in the National Tour of South Pacific, with Robert Goulet and Barbara Eden.

Selections of Lia’s archive of Asian Pacific Americans in the arts, fashion, journalism, politics and space are in the newly created LIA CHANG THEATER PORTFOLIO in the ASIAN PACIFIC AMERICAN PERFORMING ARTS COLLECTION housed in the Library of Congress Asian Division’s Asian American Pacific Islander Collection.

Lia’s portraits and performance photos have appeared in Vanity Fair, Gourmet, German Elle, Women’s Wear Daily, The Paris Review, VIBE, TV Guide, Daily Variety, Interior Design, American Theatre,, Life & Style, OUT, New York Magazine, InStyle,,,,,, The Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, USA Today, The Boston Globe, New York Times and Washington Post. A former syndicated arts and entertainment columnist for KYODO News, Lia is the New York Bureau Chief for She writes about culture, style and Asian American issues for a variety of publications and this Backstage Pass with Lia Chang blog.

Other Articles by Lia Chang:
A night out with Gordana Rashovich, Flora Goforth in The Milk Train Doesn’t Stop Here Anymore
André De Shields Set for World Premiere of Charles Smith’s The Gospel According to James at Indiana Rep, 3/22-4/10
Photos: De Shields, McClendon, Elisa, Glasco, Nemser, Phillips, Thompson at The Sovereign State of Boogedy Boogedy Reading
Photos of Lion Dancers in Los Angeles Chinatown
Photos: A.B. Cruz III and Lillian Kimura Receive 2011 AALDEF Justice in Action Awards
Photos of Lion Dancers in Los Angeles Chinatown
Photos: Chinese New Year Festival at The Huntington in San Marino
Photos:The Working Theater’s Off-Broadway production of HONEY BROWN EYES by Stefanie Zadravec at The Clurman
Photos: David Duchovny, John Earl Jelks, Amanda Peet,Tracee Chimo opening night of Neil LaBute’s The Break of Noon
André De Shields leads cast of Charles Smith’s Knock Me A Kiss at Abrons Arts Center
STORIES FROM CHINESE AMERICA: The Arthur Dong Collection, Vol. 2 as 4 disc DVD Box Set
Multimedia: Exclusive photos and video of Disney’s The Lion King Las Vegas -In the Makeup Chair with Thom Sesma
Photo Call: BD Wong and the Cast of Heading East at the Asia Society
cllick here for the Lia Chang Articles Archive.

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