Northampton Press

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CONTRIBUTED PHOTO ANDREA MCARDLE, MAUREEN MCGOVERN, DONNA MCKECHNIE AND LESLIE UGGAMS: CONTRIBUTED PHOTO ANDREA MCARDLE, MAUREEN MCGOVERN, DONNA MCKECHNIE AND LESLIE UGGAMS: "4 GIRLS 4," 8 P.M. APRIL 4, STATE THEATRE, 453 NORTHAMPTON ST., EASTON.

Spotlight On: Uggams one of the 'Girls'

Wednesday, April 2, 2014 by ELIZABETH OUELLETTE Special to The Press in Focus

Leslie Uggams, Emmy Award-winning star of the iconic 1970's miniseries, "Roots," appears in the song and memory-filled ensemble production, "4 Girls 4," 8 p.m. April 4, State Theatre, 453 Northampton St., Easton.

Uggams and her fellow female stars of stage and screen, Andrea McArdle, who was Broadway's original Annie; Maureen McGovern, an Academy Award-winning vocalist, and Donna McKechnie, a Tony award-winner for "A Chorus Line," bring music and real-life tales from their star-filled lives and careers to the State Theatre audience.

Uggams, Kunte Kinte's daughter, Kizzy, in "Roots," won acclaim for her starring role in "Hallelujah, Baby!" on Broadway and her pioneering 1969 variety show, "The Leslie Uggams Show," the first network variety TV show with an African-American host since the mid-1950s "Nat 'King" Cole Show."

For "4 Girls 4," Uggams is appearing for one night only at the State, replacing Tony Award-winning actress Faith Prince, who has another commitment.

"I'm new to the show," Uggams says in a recent phone interview. "I'm excited to work with these three lovely ladies. We are four women, we are all different, and we each have our separate moment in the show."

In "4 girls 4," Uggams, McArdle, McGovern and McKechnie perform individually and together, sharing songs and memories from their respective careers. "I have 20 minutes to myself on stage," says Uggams.

With an impressive repertoire, Uggams has many numbers to choose from. Having worked with such legends of music as Elvis, the Beatles and Frank Sinatra, she is highly-regarded by fans and critics alike. Well-known for her hit versions of "He's Got The Whole World In His Hands," "The Lady Is A Tramp" and Rodgers and Hammerstein's "June Is Bustin' Out All Over," Uggams, a New York City resident, has been touring and performing her own one-woman show for the past few years.

"I just finished my concert in New Hope [Bucks County] and we had a ball," she says. "There are just so many great songs. I'm very excited to perform in Easton with '4 Girls 4.' All of us are mutual friends, so it should be fun. Each one is someone whom I admire and like, and someone I enjoy going to see perform."

Tickets: statetheatre. org, 1-800-999-STATE, 610-252-3132