Vereen, Ben (1946- )
Scope:
The Ben Vereen collection includes manuscripts, correspondence, photographs, professional material, printed material, personal memorabilia, and audio and video material.

Manuscripts in the collection primarily consist of play scripts and screenplays. Manuscripts for plays include a speech about Alex Haley and Roots; The Princess and The Black-Eyed Pea (Karole Foreman and Andy Chukerman, 1997); the production binder for Chicago: A Musical (1998); The Exonerated (Jessica Blank and Erik Jenson, 2002); and the production binder for Wicked (2003) with "New York Performance Script" and sheet music. Manuscripts of screenplays include Dreams of Gold (Kim Delgado). Other manuscripts include handwritten lyrics to Sister Sledge’s "We Are Family" and a proposal titled "20th Century African Film and Music" (Henry Jones and Rebecca Huntsman).

Correspondence consists of both personal and professional material from 1977 to 2007. Notables include multiple letters from Chita Rivera, Robert and Vera Goulet, Reba McEntire, Wayne Brady, Laura Dern, Jeff Goldblum, and Roz Ryan.

Photographs in the collection are mainly colored prints from professional productions as well as prints from the "Stop The Killing" rally (1980). Notables include Andy Williams, Elizabeth Taylor, Suzanne Somers, Sugar Ray Robinson, Judd Hirsch, Bebe Neuwirth, Shirley MacLaine, Halle Berry, and Gary Busey, among others.

Professional material includes files regarding Fosse and I’m Not Rappaport publicity tour schedules (2002); material for the Tony Randall Theatrical Fund, Selection Committee Meeting (2007); as well as contact sheets and itineraries (2002-2003).

Printed material includes files of materials for Rachael Tocom (1996-1997); Chicago, Las Vegas Opening Clip Report (1999); Wicked, Fosse, and I’m Not Rappaport (1990-2005) with reviews and clippings. Also included is a large selection of sheet music and musical scores, as well as programs and playbills, from Fosse (2001); Def Poetry Jam on Broadway (2003); The Oscar Hammerstein Award (2005); Variety Celebrity Talent Review (2006), among others. Also included are newspaper and magazine clippings, including a featured spread in Vanity Fair (1995), and various production posters.

Personal memorabilia in the collection includes a plaque presented to Vereen by the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (1995); a certificate presented by the Mississippi Valley State University (1995); boxing trunks signed to Vereen by the cast of I’m Not Rappaport (2002), including Lauren Bacall; a mug featuring Vereen as the Wizard of Oz in Wicked; a personal drawing tablet and pencil sketches, and other various items.

Audio and video material includes cassette tapes, CDs, VHS and DVD recordings of Vereen’s professional performances, dating from 1987 to 2005.
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Notable Figures
1. Vereen, Ben
Associated Subjects
1. African American Collections -- Music Subject Guide
2. Theatre and Film Subject Guide
3. African American Collections -- Drama Subject Guide