On Stage Q & A with Jennifer Fouche with Chicago Musical
October 10, 2018
Senior Writer: Diana Bragg-Scott
TONY AWARD-WINNING MUSICAL SMASH
TO APPEAR AT DETROIT’S FISHER THEATRE, OCTOBER 16-21
By: Diana Brang-Scott
It’s the 1920’s and jazz and liquor are in abundance in the club scene. The poor housewife Roxie Hart, dreams of fame and fortune and plans on sleeping her way to the top... with someone other than her loyal husband Amos. Roxie learns that Fred Casely her lover, who promised her a big break, was leaving her. Maliciously she shoots and kills him. Desperate to avoid conviction she hires the marketing razzle-dazzle slickest attorney around (Billy Flynn) to dupe the public, the media and even her poor trusting husband of her innocence. Roxie ends up being incarcerated at Cook County jail on overpopulated murderess row, the inmates are other women who primarily knocked off the men who did them wrong. Among them is one of Roxie's idols, Velma Kelly a sexy vaudeville star who murdered her husband and sister after finding them in bed together. CHICAGO, continues with a trial, sensational headlines and of course- all that Jazz.
This sleek sexy musical has everything -seduction, betrayal, murder all based on a legendary book by Fred Ebb and Bob Fosse, music by John Kander and lyrics by Fred Ebb, CHICAGO winner of 6 Tony Awards, is now the #1 longest-running American musical in Broadway history -- and it still shows no sign of ever slowing down!
CHICAGO hits the Fisher Theater October 16- 21 with an amazing cast featuring YouTube sensation, and American Idol finalist Todrick Hall as Billy Flynn, and Detroit’s own Jennifer Fouche as Mamma Morton, the tough and powerful matron of Cook County Jail. Chicago also stars Dylis Croman as Roxie Hart, Terra C MacLleod as Velma Kelly and D. Ratell as Mary Sunshine.
I had the pleasure of speaking Jennifer, she was a delight to talk to, her bubbling personality, humor and decorum made the interview fly by. Jennifer is a proud native Detroiter who grew up on the West Side, she attended both Waldorf and Lutheran Highschool, and she is a graduate from Michigan State University.
Jennifer knew at a very young age that she wanted to be a singer, “One of my earliest memories is of a daydream, and I was wearing a long red dress and singing in front of what looked like thousands of people”, she said. With the encouragement and support of her family Jennifer followed her dream. Before becoming a Broadway star, Jennifer was signed to the Detroit based music label KMS Records as a recording artist. She toured and sang with Johnny Trudell and his orchestra for 2 years and cut her first demo with Randy Scott, a Detroit based platinum selling jazz saxophonist.
Jennifer is landed the iconic part of Matron Mamma Morton- who is the tough sassy warden of the Cook County Jail. She describes her character as, “Momma Morton doesn’t fall into the desire to be famous like some of the other characters in the show. She likes to be in the position to do things for others and of course to have people do things for her. She knows that celebrity comes and goes but she understands that there is more power in being a conduit for the celebrity than the celebrity its self.”
Jennifer has two musical numbers in CHICAGO, she sings the show stopping “When Your Good to Mamma” a comedic and risqué song about reciprocity, and “Class” a duo with Velma Kelly that is soaked with irony.
I asked Jennifer if she thought there was a message for the audience with in the show? She said, “Yes, it is a cautionary tale about placing too much importance on celebrity with out looking at the people and actions of the people that it is attached. That’s one of reasons this show is so timeless, it’s so very relevant in todays society.”
I asked Jennifer what it feels like to be coming home and playing at the Fisher Theatre for the first time? She said, “I feel so blessed to be playing this iconic role in one of my favorite musicals and to be coming home to do this Broadway show, back to the city of not only where I was birthed but my dream of Broadway was as well! It is more special to me than I can actually put into words adequately.”
Being from Detroit, I wondered what iconic Detroit places Jennifer would want to share with the cast? “Oh, that’s easy she laughed, Coney Island!” She went on and said, “Also, Belle Ille I have such an attachment to that place. I would show them the DIA, the Motown Museum, Greek Town, and did I mention Coney Island?” (Laughing)
I conclude our interview with asking Jennifer what advise she would give to young people who might want to follow in her footsteps? “Never let anyone tell you that you can’t do something because you can do anything. Never let anyone define success for you or tell you what it looks like. Define it for yourself, nothing is impossible!”
Come out and see Jennifer and the rest of the amazing cast of CHICAGO at the Fisher Theatre October 16-21.
Tickets for CHICAGO are on sale now and can be purchased online at or www.ticketmaster.com, and by phone at 800-982-2787 and can also be purchased in person at the Fisher Theatre box office. A
limited number of premium seats will be available through Ticketmaster and at the Fisher Theatre box office.
Visit for more information.