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The Ensemblist is an inside look at the experience of being a Broadway performer- from the first rehearsal through performing eight shows a week and beyond. Whether you’re an experienced theatre professional or a passionate fan, The Ensemblist will give you the opportunity to get to know new performers and the great work they do onstage, while also shedding light on some of the hidden innerworkings of the Broadway experience. Created and hosted by Mo Brady (The Addams Family, SMASH) and Nikka Graff Lanzarone (Chicago, Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown), The Ensemblist is the only podcast that shows you Broadway from the inside out. 

Blog

"The Mayor" of 44th Street

Mo Brady

by Maria Briggs

Maria Briggs

Maria Briggs

The New Year has started, and I have had a little more time to process my 2018 theatre experience.  It was such a unique opportunity to get to perform four Broadway shows within a year.  After closing Cats, I had just hoped to get another shot at Broadway.  

Within five months, I went from a swing at Frozen, to ensemble at Hello, Dolly!, back to Frozen as a vacation swing, and then took over a permanent track at Anastasia. The final callbacks, for all three shows, took place within one week. I prepared with several coaching sessions with my teachers and a lot of late nights with my boyfriend running lines.  That week, in particular, taught me to do my absolute best, leave it in the room, and then focus on the next audition.

I booked Frozen a few hours after my callback, and started rehearsals the next day.  I learned ten tracks in about eight days and debuted six tracks.  While in my first run at Frozen, I started double duty at Hello, Dolly! Hello, Dolly! was my first time on Broadway in an onstage track and covering two principal roles.  This was a very special time too, because my parents were in town and were able to see me perform in two Broadway shows. I performed in Hello, Dolly! on Saturday and that Tuesday I went back into Frozen.  They have always been supportive of my dreams. Anastasia became my new home and was my first onstage permanent track.  

None of this could have happened without the countless hours from the stage management teams and my amazing dance captains. I’m thankful to the swings, who attend extra rehearsals, and the cast and crew who come in to help with put-in rehearsals. They spend their entire day at the theatre. Every cast was welcoming and supportive. I’m fortunate that I still get to walk down 44th street and see familiar smiling faces. I’m the luckiest!

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Maria Briggs (Photo by Jacob Smith Studios)