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Sheryl Lee Ralph and Jennifer Hudson reminisce about ‘Dreamgirls’

It was a joyous meeting of Dreamgirls as Sheryl Lee Ralph appeared Tuesday on The Jennifer Hudson Show.

Ralph, who recently won her first Emmy for her role in Abbott Elementary, starred in the original Dreamgirls Broadway production from 1981-1985. She portrayed Deena Jones, lead singer of The Dreams.
Hudson starred as singer Effie White in the 2006 Dreamgirls film, for which she won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress.

Sheryl recalled following several outstanding vocalists when she auditioned for the Tony award-winning musical.
“The building was literally levitating off of the concrete, that’s how wonderful they were,” Ralph remembered. “And then there was me.”

When the producers announced two names they choose for the play, Sheryl was ready to leave, assuming she was rejected. Then, they called her name.

“I’m really having a moment, because I wish I’d have been able to see that [version of the musical],” Hudson said. “I was born the year that came out.”

The duo decided to have “some Dreamgirls fun” and wore pink feather boas, with Ralph commenting, “Girl, now this is not any cheap boa so you know I’m keeping it.”

“I can’t believe I get to do this,” Hudson said. She then followed Ralph’s choreography as they danced and sang along to the Dreamgirls’ title song.

“Oh my god, I can’t believe I just got to ha that moment with you,” Jennifer told the 65-year-old actress. “That was a dream, she’s a dream.”

Ralph returns as kindergarten teacher Barbara Howard for the second season of Abbott Elementary, which debuts Wednesday night at 9 p.m. ET on ABC.

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