Leon Bennett

The actress says working on her first Broadway musical, 'The Color Purple,' was a rewarding, but difficult job.

Feb, 23, 2017

Danielle Brooks gave it straight, no chaser when talking to ESSENCE about the daily grind of working on Broadway.

"It was hard! But it was great," she said on the red carpet of ESSENCE's 10th Annual Black Women In Hollywood event Thursday evening. Brooks took on the tough Sofia — the role made famous in the film version by Oprah Winfrey — in the 2015 Broadway revival of The Color Purple

The show went on to win two out of four trophies at the 2016 Tony Awards, but Brooks maintains it was really difficult to keep up with the brutal schedule — even with  her Juilliard background.

”It was my first time on Broadway..." she said,"...first time doing a musical.” 

The musical meant a lot to Brooks— its 2005 Broadway debut was first Broadway show she ever saw, she told ESSENCE.com back in 2015. And so she took a chance and auditioned for the show when the revival was announced a decade later.

"The first thing I did was pray about it, and I just surrendered the same way that Oprah talks about it in her Master Class when she had to surrender for the same part," Brooks said. I said, 'If it's for me, it will be.' And I'm so grateful—I've said that word a million times, but I am—that my will lined up with God's, and here I am."