Forty years ago, the production of “Mama, I Want to Sing!” first premiered. Written by Vy Higginsen and her husband Ken Wydro, the show is a Black Gospel musical based on the life of Vy’s sister, Doris Troy, and her dream of becoming a singer.

The current production is currently in its three-week run at El Teatro of El Museo del Barrio in East Harlem. NY1 was joined on set by Higginsen, as well as her daughter and the director of the new production, Ahmaya Knoelle.

Over 40 years, the show has been seen all over the world. Its themes cover family, faith, love and music.

Higginsen and Knoelle hope that people can see themselves in the production and be inspired to dream big. They also run the Mama Foundation, which teaches, trains and employs young people in the arts.

For tickets to the show, go to