Goldsboro native, musical theater star records “Annie’s” “Tomorrow” to help the music industry :: WRAL.com
A native of Goldsboro is now an international singing sensation.
Marisha Wallace grew up on a Wayne County farm with a musical family. The opportunity led her to eventually settle in London, where she performed on stages in London’s West End.
“I sang at Holy Temple Church on Dollard Town Road. And my mom, Rachelle Wallace, was a singer too,” Wallace explained.
Growing up, Wallace knew that music was his destiny. “I kind of fell into musical theater because I just wanted to be a singer,” she said. After graduating from East Carolina University, she began working as a singer in Hershey Park, PA, and on cruise ships.
Wallace says his first big breakthrough was to earn a role in the first nationwide “Book of Mormon” tour. This was followed by a role in Broadway’s “Aladdin”. Eventually, she was asked to perform in London for a production of “Dream Girls” where she played the role of Effie White.
One thing led to another, Wallace sang “The White Cliffs of Dover” to a large audience, including the royal family.
“It’s been an amazing trip from, you know, living on a pig farm until now, I just sang for the queen,” Wallace said.
A series of musical roles have occupied her in theaters of London. She was playing in the production “Waitress” when, in January, COVID-19 began to spread.
“I started to feel a little sick the last few days of the tour and I’m like, ‘Oh, I’m just exhausted,'” she said.
Wallace continued to fight the virus for three weeks. Most of his friends in the theater have also been quarantined with the disease. At that point, she said, everything was closed.
In his London apartment, Wallace turned isolation into inspiration. She worked with her producer and recorded her own rendition of “Tomorrow” from the musical production of “Annie”.
Its producer, Steve Anderson, created a piece of music and sent it to Wallace. “I took the track and recorded it right here in this room,” Wallace said. The album “Tomorrow” is his first effort with Decca Records of Universal Music Group.
Friends in the theater and those from other walks of life in the US and UK helped with the visuals, recording themselves on a video holding pieces of the song’s lyrics. “It went viral. We had over hundreds of thousands of views on this video,” Wallace said.
“And I gave the money from the single to charity for the artists, actors and people behind the scenes who couldn’t work anymore, which led to this recording deal that I have now, which is so crazy, ”Wallace explained.
She attributes her own sense of hope and optimism to her mother. She said, “My mom always instilled in me to stay positive even when the going is the darkest, because it’s always the darkest before dawn.”
“Tomorrow” says the song, “you’re still one day away.”
Marisha Wallace is also playing a big role in a new holiday movie called “Jingle Jangle”. It includes a star cast with music produced by John Legend. Wallace describes it as “the first black Christmas musical film ever made”.