Patina Miller made her Broadway debut this season in a new tuner version of the hit film “Sister Act.” As Deloris Van Cartier, the lounge singer on the run from the mob after witnessing a murder, Miller took on a role made famous by Whoopi Goldberg in the smash hit 1992 comedy. And Miller admitted the pressure was made even greater given that Goldberg is one of the producers of this show. All her worrying was for nought, as she received rave reviews and a Tony nomination for Best Musical Actress.
Ironically, her chief rival in the race is Sutton Foster (“Anything Goes”) who won this award back in 2002 for her Broadway debut in “Thoroughly Modern Millie” which was also produced by Goldberg. That show won Best Musical and Goldberg got the Tony she needed to complete her EGOT. “Sister Act” is also nominated for the top Tony but that is widely expected to go to “The Book of Mormon.”
Like that show, “Sister Act” took years to get to Broadway. Miller played the part last year in London to good reviews but producers overhauled the show, bringing in Tony nominee Douglas Carter Beane (“The Little Dog Laughed”) to rewrite the book by Emmy champs Cheri and Bill Steinkellner (“Cheers”). The tunes are by eight-time Oscar winner Alan Menken while helming was handled by four-time Tony winner Jerry Zaks.