Q-Tip is poised to infuse his musical genius into the forthcoming Muhammad Ali Broadway musical. The rap icon joins as the music producer, co-lyricist, and cast album producer.
Q-Tip In Broadway
Q-Tip, best known as the lead rapper for A Tribe Called Quest, is set to add his musical prowess to the upcoming Muhammad Ali Broadway musical.
The rap legend joins the production of the Muhammad Ali Broadway musical as the music producer, co-lyricist, and cast album producer. Q-Tip was brought in by the lead producer for the Ali musical, Richard Willis, to contribute his expertise and creativity to the project.
Alongside director and book writer Clint Dyer and composer Teddy Abrams, Q-Tip will play a key role in shaping the musical’s sound and atmosphere.
‘Ali’: A Broadway Musical
Teddy Abrams, the show’s composer, is also the music director of the Louisville Orchestra, which holds significance as the birthplace of Muhammad Ali.
Abrams previously wrote the multimedia opera/rap mashup The Greatest: Muhammad Ali, which premiered in 2017 with the Louisville Orchestra. Inspired by this production, Abrams brings his musical talent and passion for Ali to the Broadway musical, further enriching the experience.
The musical will dive deep into the remarkable life of Muhammad Ali, both inside and outside the boxing ring. It will explore pivotal moments such as Ali’s upbringing in Louisville, Kentucky, his journey to becoming a heavyweight champion, and his refusal to go to war against Vietnam.
The narrative will offer an intimate and comprehensive portrayal of Ali’s struggles, triumphs, and the indomitable spirit that made him a true hero in and out of the ring. Titled Ali, the musical draws inspiration from the 2001 movie of the same name, featuring Will Smith as the legendary boxer.
The film achieved significant success, with over $87 million in box office revenue and multiple nominations from prestigious awards such as the Academy Awards and the Golden Globe Awards.
Coming Soon 2024
In a statement, Q-Tip expressed his excitement about collaborating with Teddy Abrams, Clint Dyer, and the rest of the team to bring Muhammad Ali’s story to the stage:
“I am very excited to be collaborating with Teddy, Clint, Casey[Benjamin] and Sean[Mayes] in telling The Greatest’s story on stage. Muhammad Ali has always been a hero to me!”
Joining Q-Tip in this musical endeavor are saxophonist Casey Benjamin as the associate music producer and orchestrator Sean Mayes as the music supervisor. Together, they will infuse the show with their unique talents and perspectives.
The musical promises to be a dynamic blend of spoken word, poetry, hip-hop, rap, and classical music while still adhering to the traditional theater structure.
This innovative approach will transport the audience into Ali’s world and create a powerful emotional connection with his journey. The production is slated to premiere in the fall of 2024, with an official release date in 2025 yet to be announced.
RZA To Celebrate 30 Years With Orchestra Shows
In a loosely similar vein, rapper RZA of the Wu-Tang Clan is also set to showcase an orchestra performance to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Wu-Tang’s debut album, Enter the Wu-Tang: 36 Chambers. RZA will host a tribute with a live orchestra in New York from November 7-9, providing another example of the fusion of hip-hop and orchestral music.