March 26, 2017
In the Ellyn Bye Studio
A musical biography of Ethel Waters
Previews are Feb. 4-9 | Opening night Feb. 10
By Larry Parr
Directed by Timothy Douglas
After a rough and spirit-breaking childhood, Ethel Waters became a Vaudeville success, a recording sensation and crossed racial barriers to emerge as a Broadway and Hollywood star. But a reputation for being difficult and her own distrust of those who might employ her or love her — partly a response to the horrors of Jim Crow America — caused her to lose everything and become a recluse, until she found new strength as a gospel performer. Through it all, there were the songs – the ones that gave her solace and the ones that made her a legend. This is her remarkable story, filled with the greatest hits of a lifetime, including “Stormy Weather,” "This Joint is Jumpin'" and “Am I Blue?”
Approximately 2 hours and 10 minutes, including one intermission.
View the cast and creative team bios.
Explore the playbill.
Recommended for ages 14 and up. Contains some mature content and language. Children under 6 are not permitted at any production.
Evenings: Tuesday - Sunday at 7:30 p.m.*
Matinees: Saturday and Sundays at 2 p.m.,
Thursdays at noon*
*Note: These are general performance times. Certain productions may have exceptions. View the season calendar for more information.
This show's run time will be posted below the synopsis at left near the date of the first performance.
Related News & Reviews
"I loved the whole of McQueen's performance. She's funny and heartbreaking and brassy and dynamic and again, again, so authentic. ... what happens during the play: you feel lifted up. By Ethel Waters' music, her truth, her hilarious barbs, her persistence."
Go behind the scenes with the our Scenic Charge (aka paints!) team and artist Elecia Beebe as they bring to life a giant abstract mural depicting the life and times of Ethel Waters for the set of His Eye on the Sparrow.
Maiesha McQueen returns to The Armory after starring in Ain't Misbehavin' last season.
Literary Manager Benjamin Fainstein tells how the gospel song "His Eye is on the Sparrow" became the signature song of jazz, blues and acting legend Ethel Waters.
The Story Behind "His Eye is on the Sparrow"
The World of Ethel Waters & His Eye is on the Sparrow