By: Ellis Nassour
Tony nominee and Emmy winner Sheryl Lee Ralph of Dreamgirls and
TV’s Abbott Elementary Fame to Sign New Book Friday & Saturday
By: Ellis Nassour
March 14, 2023: Indefatigable Tony nominee as the co-star of the legendary Dreamgirls and 2022 Grammy winner for ABC’s smash hit Abbott Elementary Sheryl Lee Ralph can now add author to her list of accomplishments: Author. She is doing two signing events Friday and Saturday for her new book, DIVA 2.0: 12 Life Lessons from Me for You (Wordee Books; Trade Edition).
Fans will have two opportunities to meet Ralph: Friday from 6 – 8 P.M. at P&T Knitwear Books & Podcasts (180 Orchard Street), her only signing event in the City, and on Saturday in Brooklyn at the Billie Holiday Theatre (1368 Fulton Street, between Brooklyn and New York Avenues), there will be two live hour-long conversations about her career at 3 and 4 P.M. The latter session will be followed by a reception in the theatre lobby.
Both are ticketed events that include a copy of the book. See purchasing details below.
Of her memoir, Ralph states, “My story will empower and encourage anyone seeking to find and live their best life with beauty, dignity and a grace that radiates from within.” In her very tale of her stellar career, Ralph says she took the best lessons learned and used them to move her career forward. “Now, I’m happy to share them with you.”
The best advice she ever received as she was beginning her career came from her parents: “Be as nice as you can to as many people as you can for as long as you can.” She notes, “And that was my guiding light.”
It wasn’t always easy. “A teacher told me that my greatest difficulty in life was going to be making a choice as to what I could do because I could do so many things. So, I worked hard to develop my skills.” However, when she went to Hollywood and began making the rounds, “In one day, I was told I was too tall, too short, too black and not black enough — all in one day! That was my challenge and I decided I had to push on through”
If anyone knows a thing or two about staying power in the capricious world of show business, it’s Ralph. In her personal recollections, she reveals the ups and downs of stardom, the heartbreaks and triumphs, the strength she found in her family and the kind of love that gives wings.”
She takes readers behind the scenes of stage, screen, and media to discover what a true aspiring artists need to know. The first step, she writes is “respecting oneself. Whether starring on the big screen with Sidney Poitier, Denzel Washington, Eddie Murphy, Robert De Niro, Jon Voight, or Whoopi Goldberg, or on the small screen (Moesha, Ray Donovan, Motherland: Fort Salem, or Abbott Elementary), Ralph states she brought her “D.I.V.A.: Divinely Inspired, Victoriously, Awesome self to every project.” They’re the qualities which have earned her the respect of her peers and recognition from legions of fans.
The Friday night event is “signing only.” Ralph will not personalize them. However, there will be the opportunity of photos with her. P&T also notes Ralph won’t be signing memorabilia.
Ralph, actress, singer, theater investor, activist, and now author burst onto the world stage in her role as Deena Jones in the Michael Bennett’s groundbreaking musical Dreamgirls, with music by Henry Krieger and book and lyrics by Tom Eyen. After her Tony-nominated performance, she returned to the stage in Thoroughly Modern Millie and Wicked, in which she made Broadway history as the first African American to play Madame Morrible. Her portrayal as right-on and beloved teacher Barbara Howard on Abbott Elementary not only earned her an Emmy, but made her the second Black woman since Jackée Henry to receive the honor in 35 years.
Admission, including book: P&T Knitwear Books & Podcasts, $22; the Billie Holiday Theatre, $30. To purchase, go to: Sheryl Lee Ralph Presents DIVA 2.0 [SIGNING ONLY] Tickets, Fri, Mar 17, 2023 at 6:00 PM | Eventbrite. The same link will have tickets for the Billie Holiday Theatre.