Regina Marie Williams
2006-2007 McKnight Theater Artist Fellow
Regina Marie Williams
A phenomenal actor and world-class vocalist, she consistently wows critics and leaves audiences enthralled, staying in high demand. At such nationally renowned venues as The Guthrie Theater, Penumbra Theatre Company, Mixed Blood Theatre and jazz hot-spot The Dakota, this lady of the stage leaves cataracts of applause in her wake. For good measure, acclaim comes from no less a source than Angela Bassett who, in Entertainment Weekly, named Regina Marie Williams "the best singer you've never heard. "
Williams first stepped on the boards in Los Angeles, California, inspired by Tina Turner and her Proud Mary. She hit Minneapolis in 1987, methodically went about making a name for herself and steadily picked up steam. The powerhouse performer gained traction, starring in Daughters of Africa (Mixed Blood), a solo vehicle in which Regina got to air out both her acting and singing chops, depicting a gallery of historic figures, including Aretha Franklin, Billie Holiday and Lena Horne. Williams then made waves across the theatre scene with a sterling turn in Gus Edward’s Louis & Ophelia (Penumbra), serving notice that a star had arrived. Her galvanizing stint as Dinah Washington in Dinah Was (Penumbra) cemented William’s standing as a front-line talent. Not only was the run extended, the production was remounted the following season. Williams has notched success after success ever since, including Constant Star and Crowns. Recently, she starred in Mixed Blood’s production of Obie Award winner Dael Orlandersmith’s Yellowman at Guthrie Theater Dowling Studio. Currently, she’s in rehearsal for Jump at the Sun: based in the life and times of Zora Neale Hurston.
Seizing a golden opportunity presented by her acclaimed tour de force in Dinah Was, Williams recorded the companion CD, Regina Is…The Songs of Dinah Washington. She follows it with the newly released Feel the Spirit, soulful renderings of traditional spirituals that bring her own, captivating bent to gospel music.
The wondrously gifted Williams has star quality written all over her in block letters.