“The Color Purple” reaped four Tony Awards nominations, and won both Best Musical Revival and Best Actress for Broadway newcomer Cynthia Erivo in the role of Celie (played by Whoopi Goldberg in the 1985 film).
This remouting is a pared down version of the original 2005 production, which was in turn based on the 1982 novel by Alice Walker. In its first run on Broadway, “The Color Purple,” with a score by a trio of newcomers — Brenda Russell, Allee Willis and Stephen Bray — and a book by Pulitzer Prize winner Marsha Norman (“‘night Mother”) earned an impressive 11 Tony Awards nominations. However, it won just one, for leading lady LaChanze.
After a heartfelt introduction by Oprah Winfrey, who reaped an Oscar nomination for her performance in the movie, the cast of “The Color Purple” raised the roof of the Beacon Theater as they made a “joyful noise.”
It was one of just two musicals that stood in the way of a “Hamilton” sweep. Besides that win for Errivo (over, among others, “Hamilton” leading lady Phillipa Soo), the revival of “She Loves Me” won Best Scenic Design.