Dyllón Burnside, Danny Lee Wynter, Eloka Ivo to star, directed by Daniel Evans
The Royal Court Theatre in London has announced casting for its forthcoming premiere of Black Superhero by Danny Lee Wynter.
US actor Dyllón Burnside, star of Ryan Murphy hit TV dramas Pose, American Horror Story and Dahmer – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story, is set to make his London stage debut in the play.
The play’s writer Danny Lee Wynter is also in the cast, alongside Eloka Ivo (Avenue 5), Rochenda Sandall (Line of Duty), Ben Allen (Breeders), Dominic Holmes (Industry), and Ako Mitchell (Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness).
Black Superhero will be directed by award-winning Daniel Evans – the outgoing artistic director of Chichester Festival Theatre and soon to be co-artistic director of the RSC. Last week Chichester named the new artistic director as Justin Audibert.
Black Superhero is the debut play from British actor Danny Lee Wynter, who recently starred in The Normal Heart at the National Theatre, for which he scooped an Olivier Award nomination. His other acting credits include TV dramas Joe’s Palace and Capturing Mary.
Burnside’s other credits include Keenan Scott II’s Thoughts of A Colored Man on Broadway, and movie Wild Goat Surf.
The play is about a group of three Black queer friends. One of them, King (Dyllón Burnside), is a Black, queer movie star who has the world at his feet, one is Raheem (Eloka Ivo), an up-and-coming actor, and finally David (Danny Lee Wynter), who works for his sister (Rochenda Sandall), as a kids’ entertainer.
Danny Lee Wynter said in a press statement: “I am deeply honoured that the Royal Court has chosen to stage my debut play, BLACK SUPERHERO. I feel lucky to have this extraordinarily accomplished group of artists come together to tell this story about a messy, funny, complicated, often savage group of queer friends who drive a man towards his own journey of healing and self acceptance. I wanted to write a big, epic story that asks difficult questions about who and where we are.
“Black Superhero is a love letter to the theatre. A subversion of the historical notion that a black, gay man – both in art and the world – is merely an adjunct, a side-note, an unserious man or a source only of amusement. He can, of course, be fun, but he’s also many other things; things the world has made him; things he has learnt to be for his own survival. I wanted to place him front and centre at the heart of the kind of narrative that many of us brown boys who like men have, for the most part, been culturally starved of since we entered the world. I have tried to present his myriad flaws, his fears, his sensuality, his intimate desires. To celebrate him, and those like him, by ultimately allowing him to own all of it; by becoming the hero of his own story.”
Daniel Evans told Baz from Deadline that when he read the script he could feel Wynter’s “20 years of being in the profession… it’s like he’s absorbed the best of all the playwrights he’s admired across his career and channelled them.”
Black Superhero is designed by Olivier Award-winner Joanna Scotcher. Costume design is by Kinnetia Isidore, with lighting design by Ryan Day, sound design by Tingying Dong, movement direction by Gerrard Martin, and intimacy co-ordination by Yarit Dor. Matthew IIiffe is assistant director, Zoe Thomas-Webb is associate costume designer and costume supervisor.
The show starts rehearsals later this month, ahead of its run at the Royal Court from 14 March to 29 April 2023.
Currently playing at the Royal Court is Sound of the Underground, until 25 February 2023.