For close to a decade, Anthony Wayne has been treading the boards of The Great White Way with stellar work in Broadway musicals such as Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, Anything Goes and most recently the Tony Award-winning revival of Pippin. This fall, the Norfolk, Va. native, along with his partner Kendrell Bowman, will present their longtime passion project, Mighty Real: A Fabulous Sylvester Musical – exploring the life and music of late disco icon Sylvester.
Set to open at New York City’s Theatre at St. Clement’s on September 5, the project was inspired by an episode of the TV One documentary series Unsung. “I said, ‘Let’s do something to celebrate his drive and his ambition to just be who he wanted to be,’” says Wayne, 33, who does double duty as the writer and co-director of the show.
Previously produced as a tribute concert at (Le) Poisson Rouge in Greenwich Village, Mighty Real is now a full musical theater experience with more songs, costumes and layers that Wayne promises will be, “higher, bigger and better.” Bowman, 32, who hails from Charleston, S.C., boasts a background in fashion (working with brands such as Louis Vuitton and Balenciaga and music stars including K. Michelle and Kanye West). In addition to co-directing, he also handles costume design, taking cues from many of Sylvester’s music videos and live performances and by working closely with the late singer’s family.