by Nic Ryan
Part of Our "Giving Notice" Series
Before I jumped onboard the “Locomotion” in Beautiful - The Carole King Musical, I was on another ride for two and a half years, touring with the First National of Motown The Musical, where I was a swing and understudy covering 11 tracks. I went on for ten of them. Often. I was hungry then to step into my own track and share my talents nightly with the world. Before I knew it, we touched down in NYC and were easing into the Nederlander Theatre back on Broadway when Motown posted its closing notice. Miraculously, I got the offer from Beautiful the next day. Divine timing was certainly at work. I was so excited! I didn’t realize at the time I was walking out of rehearsals from one gig straight into another without a moment to just be a person. I never really took the time to recover and reflect on my experience at Motown. It caught up with me.
The Drifters, Temptations, Four Tops, Stevie Wonder, Smokey Robinson & Commodores couldn’t be more varied in style and sound, and without their presence or their impact, I doubt America nor the world would find empathy in the black experience and begin to bridge the racial divide. I am humbled to have presented a small sampling of each of their music TODAY in THIS world when we so desperately need a healing.
But after more than four years of crooning, I was not only running out of steam, I was starting to feel like a one-trick pony. The actor in me is hungry to speak text onstage or in front of a camera, to create and craft a character. It does not fall on deaf ears or blind eyes how fortunate I've been and AM to have this chance. But I've never been one to settle. I feel like I've grown as much as this experience can teach me and I’m ready for a role now. I’m ready to give it my all. I love musical theatre and BroadHWAY but before I completely crash and burn out, I decided to take a step away and refocus my energies while searching for the next amazing opportunity headed my way. :)
I started this incredible journey with magnificent performers and crew. Many of whom were originators of their parts. This job has been a gift. One that has been filled with amazing greetings, meetings and happy trails. I wouldn’t change a thing about any of the memories I’ve made. I'll cherish them always, but here's to the future.