HAPPENING NOW 😉…. The World Premiere of Lila Rose Kaplan’s The Magician’s Daughter at The Geva Theatre Center in Rochester!!! From learning REAL magic to tackling the subject of addiction and its affects on a father-daughter dynamic, this journey has been one for the books! This dark comedy is sure to make you laugh and cry all in one breath! So grateful for this experience. Kicking off 2019 with a SPARKLE!!
2018 came to a close with me back at Two River and working on August Wilson’s, King Hedley II, the second to last play in Wilson’s 10-play American Century Cycle. It is considered to be the darkest, hardest play in the cycle and a direct sequel to Seven Guitars (37 years earlier), which I was blessed to be apart of at Two River Theater three years ago!! I played the powerhouse Tonya, King Hedley II’s wife, which has proven itself to be VERY prosperous! This experience, by far, is in my top 2 favorite regional theater projects! OH… and check out my Broadway World Interview during my rehearsal process of King Hedley II.
Looking back… I can say that 2017 started off and ended with a BANG!! I was blessed with starting the year working on one of Dominique Morisseau’s stellar plays Sunset Baby at TheaterWorks Hartford.
Directly FOLLOWING… I went to Minneapolis to play the LEAD in Lydia Diamond’s adaptation of Toni Morrison’s novel The Bluest Eye. I had a ball working on the beautifully tragic life of Pecola Breedlove. And to top it off I was at The Guthrie!! YES, you read that right… THE GUTHRIE!!!!!!! It was, HANDS DOWN, one of the most rewarding and best overall experiences I’ve EVER had in regional theater!!!! And I ended the year with another Morisseau production…. Skeleton Crew at Balitmore Center Stage!! What a year 🙂
King Hedley II
“The cast of King Hedley II is perfectly suited to their roles. They impeccably bring the drama and occasional humor of August Wilson‘s superbly written play to the stage. … The actors’ performances are beyond praise. Captivating scenes include Tonya speaking of motherhood and the life of her teenage daughter; …” ~ Broadway World
“…and the marital tension between King and Tonya, exquisitely acted by Ms. Bellizeare.” ~ Scene On Stage
“If Faye represents the closing time of retirement, then Shanita, energetically played by Brittany Bellizeare, represents the opening – the beginning of adulthood, with all the new responsibilities but the hopefulness of many possibilities. Shanita is heavily pregnant, and Bellizeare had no problem convincing me of that. Bellizeare, as Shanita, conveys a strong woman who takes great pride in her work, and although there are some trust issues, Bellizeare lets the audience know that Shanita is willing and capable to raise her baby on her own.” ~ MD Theatre Guide
“Brittany Bellizeare does vibrant work as Shanita, a young, pregnant worker who hears music in the rhythm of the factory and takes pride in what she does. … With a poetic edge, Skeleton Crew strikes a lot of ever-pertinent notes about this country and what it values. The Center Stage production ensures that those notes sing and sting.” ~ The Baltimore Sun
“Invigoratingly insightful and authentically absorbing with smart staging and pulsating lyrical dialogue, Baltimore Center Stage’s Skeleton Crew is a riveting, remarkable production, brimming with heart and hope that stirs and sparks from start to finish.” ~ DC Metro Theater Arts
The Bluest Eye
“Brittany Bellizeare brilliantly played the main character, eleven-year-old Pecola Breedlove. This was evidenced by Friday night’s standing ovation. Bellizeare skillfully drew the audience into an emotionally tumultuous world of racial victimization and self-hatred, difficult to stomach and hard for any compassionate human being to witness.” ~ Asian American Press
“Bellizeare’s Pecola wins our empathy with her total innocence. In her confusion and hurt, we see the kind of youthful wishing and dreaming that all kids do.” ~ Star Tribune
“Brittany Bellizeare offers a haunted Pecola who carries herself as if she’s been broken for a long time but is trying to hide the fact that she’s bound together with the thinnest of threads. She ably shows us how those internal threads are frayed, and when the last one snaps, her final descent into madness is truly chilling.” ~ Twin Cities (Pioneer Press)
“Brittany Bellizeare is mesmerizing as the intense, cutting, yet vulnerable Nina.” ~ Pillow Talk
“But it is Brittany Bellizeare who shines most as Nina. Her broken spirit, hidden behind a streetwise and tough exterior reveals itself gradually throughout the play leading to a resolute and more settled woman in the final scenes of the play.” ~ Broadway World
“Brittany Bellizeare’s performance as Nina is superb on every level; it’s an exhausting role, and one which requires stamina, and Bellizeare surfs the waves of raw emotion effortlessly.” ~ The Westfield News
The Last Tiger in Haiti
“Brittany Bellizeare, as Rose, demonstrates a remarkable transformation from an 11 year old girl in a shack in Haiti to a woman living in luxury with equal aplomb.” ~ San Diego Free Press
“It’s an extraordinary debut. … Max, who at 18 has aged out of restavek status and is about to gain his freedom, exhibits a protective instinct over the youngest of them, the sweet, seemingly unaffected Rose (Brittany Bellizeare, bringing an edge to her performance at just the right moments).” ~The San Diego Union-Tribune
“Northern Stage’s casting is exceptional. … Bellizeare captures a half-dozen personae wrapped up in Camae. … Bellizeare steps deftly through these subtle changes of character, voice and temperament, finally bringing King to a boiling point of fear, rage, and finally, acceptance.” ~ Valley News
“Camae, who admits that “I cuss worse than a sailor with the clap,” is an adorable, bright woman who matches King’s verbal wit. One of the best scenes is her impersonation of King, casting aside his prepared speech, Why America is Going to Hell, in favor of her own version, Fuck the White Man. … Bellizeare as Camae is riveting upon her entrance and that doesn’t change much.” ~ Daily UV
“What made Saturday’s performance so powerful — and funny — is that Charlie Hudson III and Brittany Bellizeare were, for the 90-minute duration of the play, King and Camae. Directed by Carol Dunne, Northern Stage’s artistic director, their performance was like intimate chamber music as they flirted, sparred, cried and laughed – not necessarily at the same time. … Bellizeare as Camae, the catalyst and representative of suppressed black girls, successfully combined her intertwined dark history with real depth.” ~Times Argus
“Brittany Bellizeare catalyzes the action as Louise’s country relative Ruby … an experience that’s more joyously, devastatingly, elegantly, messily alive than most anything you’ll see on stage this season,” ~ Asbury Park Press
“Ruby (Brittany Bellizeare) is a spirited young woman who has come from the South to visit Louise, her aunt. … A must-see”, “an important, entertaining show and you will relish every moment of this outstanding production” ~ Broadway World
“August Wilson’s Seven Guitars is 24-carat gold” ~ Two River Times
This show was voted #1 Best Show in the state of New Jersey in 2015!!!!!!!! HOLLERRRRRR!!!!!
**Production photos from The Magician’s Daughter were taken by Goat Factory Media Entertainment, King Hedley II and Seven Guitars by T Charles Erickson Photography, Skeleton Crew by Bill Geenen, The Bluest Eye by Dan Norman, Sunset Baby by Lanny Nagler, The Last Tiger in Haiti by Jim Carmody, and The Mountaintop by Jason Merwin.