Where are you from? Americus, GA
Broadway credits: All The Way, Kinky Boots, Amazing Grace
How did you hear you’d booked your first Broadway show? Actually, I heard a whisper about it from all the way across the country, from Oregon, through “back channels”. Shortly after the whisper came the official call from my agents. I was walking along the Hudson up in Fort Tryon Park. I didn’t skip home, I’m 47, but I certainly smiled a lot. And had a celebratory bourbon as soon as I walked in the door.
What is your favorite event in the Broadway community? A year or two before I moved here I saw my first Gypsy Of The Year performance at the New Amsterdam. I was still out on the road with Spamalot and I was trying to decide whether or not to move to NYC after the tour closed. Being in that theatre that afternoon went a long way towards convincing me that this was a community I wanted to be a part of.
What’s something about Broadway that fascinates you? The ushers. Particularly the older ones. They’ve seen everything and have opinions about all of it. And they’re pretty on the money most of the time. When I’m in a show I have a habit, each night, of walking the house before it opens. Doing that at the Neil Simon and eavesdropping on the usher cross-chat as they stuffed programs was fascinating. Truly. Want to fix your show? Talk to the ushers.
What, other than theatre, has inspired you recently? A few weeks ago I saw the National Ballet of Canada perform their Alice In Wonderland at Lincoln Center. The young man (Dylan Tedaldi) dancing the Lewis Carroll/White Rabbit role was such a good actor! Danced it beautifully, yes, but brought really lovely character based behavior and storytelling to the stage. He made me want to go back into the rehearsal hall and up my non-verbal game.
If I could have coffee with any living person, it would be… Stephen Sondheim or Hal Prince. Dead heat. I’d happily take either. I’d be scared to death if it were Sondheim. Prince would be easier. Which means I should probably go with Sondheim, right?
If I could trade places with anybody for a day, I would choose… Casey Nicholaw. For five thousand reasons. None of them money.
To be successful in this business, it takes… Luck and the readiness for that luck when it arrives.The readiness is all.
Tell us a secret. At one point, while playing King Arthur on the road in Spamalot, I had four live roosters in my dressing room. I believe it was Cincinnati. Yeah, it was definitely Cincinnati.