The Raymond F. Kravis Center for the Performing Arts is proud to announce the musical Ain’t Too Proud – The Life And Times Of The Temptations will be showing in West Palm Beach from April 26 – 30.
Following its West Palm Beach run, Ain’t Too Proud will make its anticipated Miami premiere at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County from May 9 – 14.
Stepping into the role of ‘Otis Williams’ will be original First National Tour cast member, Michael Andreaus, and joining the tour from the Original Broadway Company is E. Clayton Cornelious as ‘Paul Williams.’ They join the current Classic Temptations Jalen Harris as ‘Eddie Kendricks,’ Harrell Holmes Jr. as ‘Melvin Franklin,’ and Elijah Ahmad Lewis as ‘David Ruffin’.
The tour also welcomes new cast members, Reggie Bromell, Felander, Melvin Gray Jr., Quiana Onrae’l Holmes, Ryan M. Hunt, Jeremy Kelsey, AJ Lockhart, Omar Madden, Dwayne P. Mitchell, Devin Price, Brittny Smith, Amber Mariah Talley and Nazarria Workman, who will be performing with current tour cast members Brian C. Binion, Shayla Brielle G., Devin Holloway and Andrew Volzer.
Featuring the Grammy Award-winning songs and Tony Award-winning moves, Ain’t Too Proud is the electrifying new musical that follows The Temptations’ extraordinary journey from the streets of Detroit to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. With their signature dance moves and unmistakable harmonies, they rose to the top of the charts creating an amazing 42 Top Ten Hits with 14 reaching number one and being voted the greatest R&B group of all time by Billboard Magazine in 2017. The rest is history — how they met, the groundbreaking heights they hit and how personal and political conflicts threatened to tear the group apart as the United States fell into civil unrest. This thrilling story of brotherhood, family, loyalty, and betrayal is set to the beat of the group’s treasured hits, including “My Girl,” “Just My Imagination,” “Get Ready,” “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone” and so many more.
Nominated for 12 Tony Awards and the winner of the 2019 Tony Award for Best Choreography, Ain’t Too Proud tells the thrilling story of brotherhood, family, loyalty, and betrayal, as the group’s personal and political conflicts threatened to tear them apart during a decade of civil unrest in America.
It was a pleasure to sit down with E. Clayton Cornelious who plays Paul Williams for this exclusive Hotspots interview:
At what age did you begin performing?
I started performing in the 4th grade. I had always wanted to perform, as I learned to play 5 instruments.
What was your first paid gig?
I guess it was at a theme park. I am from Pittsburgh, and I performed at Kennywood. The first year I worked there I worked the gate and the next year I was in the show.
When did you know performing would be your career?
I performed all through High School doing musicals and plays, and I remember I did the show “Company,” and I played the role of Bobbie. My father came to see it and he said to me “You are really good, and you should do comedy.” That was the first time I thought I could do this. After that I chose to go into a theatre program for college.
Other than this one, what has been your favorite role so far?
My favorite role was the Caterpillar in “Wonderland.” It was my first leading role, and I was very nervous.
What’s your fantasy role (a role you haven’t played but would die to)?
Its funny, I really don’t think I have a fantasy role, but I do think I would really want to play the baker one day in “Into The Woods.”
Is there extra pressure in this role playing someone famous and from such an iconic group?
There might be a little bit of extra pressure because Otis is still alive, and I was part of the original Broadway show and helped create the show. You really have the pressure of getting it right for Otis because he lived this legacy. I always got a little more nervous when he was in the audience, but the truth is he is so supportive of this show. I have been with this show for 7 years and I am having the greatest time of my life.
Is it hard being on the road all the time?
Yes, it’s hard. Its great to go to different cities and see different cultures, but its hard to be away from your home all the time.
How well do you and your castmates get along?
The reason why I stayed 7 years with this show is because of the family unit we have and continue to have even with the new actors.
Describe yourself in 3 words?
Funny, committed, and smart.
What do you do for fun?
Rest, as I am the oldest member of this company. I do love to Netflix and chill when I have time off. I also am a big foodie.
What should our readers expect from this touring company of “Ain’t Too Proud – The Life And Times Of The Temptations”?
It’s a good time. You will also hear a wonderful Motown catalogue that everyone is going to enjoy. We are going to give you 2 ½ hours of songs, dancing and a story and most people don’t know the whole story. It’s really a great night of theatre.
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For more information on E. Clayton Cornelious, go to instagram.com/eclaycorn or his website eclaycorn.com.
For more information on Ain’t Too Proud, visit AintTooProudMusical.com.
Tickets for the Kravis Center’s premiere engagement of Ain’t Too Proud start at $40, and can be purchased at Kravis.org, by calling (561) 832-7469 or by visiting the Box Office during regular box office hours Monday through Saturday from Noon to 5pm.
Tickets for the Miami engagement of Ain’t Too Proud range from $35-$130 and may be purchased at Arshtcenter.org or at the Adrienne Arsht Center box office by calling (305) 949-6722.