Deena Jones...Backup singer or the Dreamettes, who becomes the lead singer for the Dremas. Thing, young and beautiful; young and naive
Lorrell Robinson...Third and youngest of the Dreamettes; bright and bubbly; falls into an affair with James Early
Effie White...Lead Singer for the Dreamettes; full-figured; bold and soulful voice
Michelle Morris...Replaces Effie as a backup singer for the Dreams; falls in love with C.C.
The Stepp Sisters...Girl group and rival of the Dreamettes; compete at the Apollo talent contest
Curtis Taylor Jr....Sly, manipulative Cadillac dealer who manages the Dreams and turns them into superstars; becomes romantically involved with Deena
James "Thunder" Early...A James Brown-like soul singer; wild and eccentric; has an affair with Lorrell Robinson
C.C. (Claridge Conrad) White...Effie's talented brother; songwriter and composer for the Dreams; falls in love with Michelle Morris
Marty...Manager for James Early but is later replaced by Curtis Taylor
The MC...Host of the talent show at the Apollo Theatre
Tiny Joe Dixon...Singer and winner of he talent contest at the Apollo Theatre
Little Albert and the Tru Tones...Singing group who compete at the Apollo talent contest
Dave and the Sweethearts...Mainstream white group who re-record James Early's hit song "Cadillac Car"
Jerry Norman...Night club owner; helps Effie get on her feet