Usher Developing TV Series Based on Jazz Age Origins

·2 min read
Photo:  Paras Griffin (Getty Images)
Photo: Paras Griffin (Getty Images)

Usher may have just kicked off his latest Las Vegas residency, but the entertainer isn’t slowing down anytime soon.

According to Variety, the Grammy-winner is working with Starlings Television (Pandora) to executive produce a new series based on the dawn of the Jazz Age.

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Set in New Orleans, Storyville “follows the tale of five brothel madams as they fight to control the red light district.”

This sounds like a really interesting premise, but it all depends on who plays the madams. A chance to see five legendary actresses tearing up the screen in a fun period piece is appointment TV. Add in a New Orleans setting, plus what will likely be a great soundtrack, and this has streaming or cable written all over it. In fact, it definitely sounds like something that airs on Starz after one of the Power series.

“Usher’s massive global appeal, musical and acting genius will propel this unique and compelling original series into must-see viewing worldwide,” Starlings TV President/EP Chris Philip told Variety. “His invaluable creative and musical contributions to Storyville fulfill our vision of contrasting the gritty, sometimes brutal sides of New Orleans life with it giving birth to a beautiful, diverse and defining new artform.”

Clearly the “Confessions Part II” singer is fascinated by New Orleans, as it plays a role in his Las Vegas show Usher: My Way - The Las Vegas Residency. It’s a jukebox musical that “takes a trip to a Magic City-like strip club, a stroll down the French Quarter in New Orleans, worships Orishas in West Africa, and does a few laps on skates at Cascade or Golden Glide,” per the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

“There’s a bit more sophistication,” Usher said. “We dressed it up a little bit differently but yet just as much glitz and glam. All of these places that I’m showing you are places where our culture was celebrated whether it’s the Harlem Renaissance, speakeasies, Black Wall Street in Tulsa or Parisian clubs.”