FLASHBACK FRIDAY: Earlier this week, Marissa Jaret Winokur, the acclaimed stage and screen actress who wowed Broadway in creating the role of “Tracy Turnblad” in the original production of HAIRSPRAY (earning herself a 2003 Tony Award for Best Performance By A Leading Actress in a Musical) celebrated her 17th Anniversary of being cancer free.

Winokur was part of Hairspray’s road to Broadway since the very beginning. However, that road to Broadway can lead to a small unexpected bump in the road. During the early stages of the show, she received the most shocking news of her life that she was diagnosed with cervical and uterine cancer. She underwent several weeks of treatment with doctors removing the tumor. Luckily, she did not receive chemotherapy and the cancer was not harmful.

In addition, Winokur kept her condition a secret to the entire cast, crew, and creative team of HAIRSPRAY fearing for her life that she would no longer be part of the show. The company did find out and they gave her so much love and support, she made a quick recovery and back to the show in time for it’s 2002 Broadway Opening Night and ended up winning her Tony.

Happy 17 Years Cancer Free Marissa!! You are a warrior and as always YOU CAN’T STOP THE BEAT indeed. We at New York Broadway Tours want you back on the New York stage ASAP.

Marissa Jaret Winokur discusses getting diagnosed with cervical and uterine cancer months before opening “Hairspray” as Tracy Turnblad. This interview includ…

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