Patina Miller talks about her divine Broadway debut

LINDA ARMSTRONG Special to the AmNews | 7/27/2011, 5:11 p.m.

AmNews: What are the challenges in doing a well-known musical, where the storyline has been slightly changed and the songs that everyone knows from the musical have been completely altered?

PM: I think they have taken it in and they forget about it. All the people I met said they went in thinking, "I don't know if I'm going to like it." But they said they were immediately hooked. This show is about bringing joy to people's lives, and that's what I'm really proud of.

AmNews: This musical is such a joy to watch. How are you feeling when you're performing?

PM: I enjoy doing it every single night, no matter how tired I get. I've grown with this character since playing it 2009 to 2011. I'm so fortunate and blessed to be starring in a show like this.

AmNews: You have a degree in musical theater from Carnegie Mellon University, but when did you first know you wanted to perform?

PM: My mom had me start singing in church when I was very young. Then I sang publically in seventh grade in a talent show. I went to a performing arts camp from ages 11-14. I fell in love with acting and singing. My mom sent me to a performing arts boarding show, the South Carolina Governor's School for the Arts and Humanities. From there, I got a full scholarship to Carnegie Mellon. Then everything started happening, I've been really blessed.

AmNews: Why should people come to see this show?

PM: I think people should come to see the show because it's great entertainment. It's fun, and it's a great story. You get to see a show where we [the African-American community] are represented. We're doing a great job and having a good time.