Fantasia has missed almost 50 performances of The Color Purple

Since her debut as Celie in The Color Purple on Broadway earlier this year, Fantasia “has missed nearly 50 performances, production sources said,” according to New York Post columnist Michael Riedel. Because Broadway shows refund or exchange tickets if a show’s star is gone, “absences have wreaked havoc at the box office.”

The paper says the show “began grossing more than $1 million a week” with Fantasia in the lead role, and before she even debuted, the show had $6 million in pre-ticket sales.

Another source told the paper, “I’m not making excuses for her, but she lives the role when she’s onstage, and it’s taken an emotional toll on her. She’s just not up to doing eight performances a week. Even LaChanze — with her cold-hearted performance — couldn’t take it.”

Fantasia’s ‘Purple’ Flu [New York Post]

The Sing-Off loses its star

Ben Folds

NBC's super-fun December a capella singing competition The Sing-Off is returning, but without its star judge, Ben Folds, and only as a two-hour special. Those are really depressing changes for a series that proved itself to be a super-fun show when it returned last December.


A film director talks about becoming a reality TV character

Anna Martemucci

What is it like to have your life turned into reality TV? Director Anna Martemucci, one of the two directors featured on Starz' exceptional reality series, talks about that, the competition, and her collaboration with her husband and brother-in-law.

Plus: How the show's producers tried to keep the $250,000 competition fair.

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.