Diversity Complaints Halt Planned Prince of Egypt Stage Musical Reading

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Photo: Dreamworks Animation

A free performance of The Prince of Egypt in Sag Harbor, New York, has been cancelled following significant complaints about the production’s lack of diversity. The stage musical adaptation — which is based on DreamWorks’ popular 1998 animated film about Moses’ life in Ancient Egypt as detailed in the Book of Exodus — is currently in early stages of production at the nonprofit Bay Street Theater, but received a large amount of backlash for the majority of the cast being white. (Popular theater actresses Cynthia Erivo and Denée Benton were among those who voiced concern.) "DreamWorks and Bay Street today announced that the planned free concert reading of The Prince of Egypt has been canceled," a statement on the theater’s Facebook page read. "We regret any inconvenience or disappointment this may cause the audience that was planning to attend this free one-night community event." The theater noted that it made no long-term commitments to its casting decisions, and that around two-thirds of the actors for the staged reading were going to be white.