Alexa
  • Directory of Taiwan

Aretha Franklin among judges at auditions for stage production on her life and career

Aretha Franklin among judges at auditions for stage production on her life and career

About 70 people have auditioned for a stage production of the life and career of the Grammy-winning singer known as the "Queen of Soul," Aretha Franklin.
"Aretha: From These Roots" is expected to open in Detroit next spring. Franklin, who is among the judges for the three days of auditions that began Tuesday, said the major roles will be cast out of Hollywood.
Franklin said she was impressed by some of the would-be cast members.
Breanna Norman, a10-year-old from Detroit quietly walked up to the microphone, took a deep breath, closed her eyes and began singing "Amazing Grace."
About a minute later, she thanked Franklin for listening to her.
"I'm not hard on anybody. I'm just here to listen," Franklin, 65, said during a break Tuesday. "I try to make them comfortable coming in the door."
Those auditioning were judged on voice, singing ability, appearance and presentation, said Ron Moten, one of seven judges.
However, only a few hopefuls received top scores.
"If it's Aretha Franklin's life, you are talking about the best of the best," said judge Greg Dunmore.
Ciara Roberts, 25, of Pasadena, California, received a top ranking from at least one judge.
"I came here on a mission and I'm not leaving until I get what I came for, which is playing Aretha Franklin," said Roberts, who belted out a powerful version of "Since You've Been Gone."
Singing styles varied from the opera-trained voice of Teresa Moore-Mitchell, who drove from Salisbury, North Carolina, to the gospel stylings of LaToya Turrentine, 22, of Detroit and Denise Stubbs of Wayne County's Redford Township.
"I love Aretha Franklin, but I can't sing like her," Stubbs, 42, said after her version of "To God Be the Glory."


Updated : 2021-05-14 13:26 GMT+08:00