Podcast Episode 77 – Stephen Byrd


Stephen C. Byrd has done a whole bunch of things.  He was a Private Equity guy (talk about great training for raising money).  He was out in Hollywood for a while.

And now, he’s landed on Broadway.

And he loves it.

Which is great news for us, because that means he’ll stick around for a while.

Why is it such good news for Broadway that Stephen wants to keep on producing?  Well, you know how Broadway is more diverse than Hollywood?  Stephen is one of the reasons why.  His multi-racial productions of classics like Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and Streetcar Named Desire have not only put more people of color on the stage, but they’ve brought more audiences of color to the theater than ever before (read this NY Times profile to learn more).  Add to that all his other credits, including last season’s Eclipsed, and you know that Stephen is helping to stretch the definition of the traditional Broadway audience.

Stephen sat down with me to talk about the mission statement of his company and . . .

  • How he describes his target audience.
  • How he assembled an all-star cast for his very first show – and the long process it took to get there.
  • Why he didn’t cast Lupita Nyong’o the first time she auditioned for one of his shows.
  • How Stephen believes we can make Broadway’s audiences more diverse.
  • What’s the most important thing for movie stars to learn when they do Broadway.

Enjoy Mr. Byrd!

Click above to listen.

Listen to it on iTunes here.  (And give me a rating, while you’re there!)

Download it here.

Click here to read the transcript.

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