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New York, NY

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. 


Connect with each of our guests as they tackle The Ensemblist's Q&A!

Q&A: Gaelen Gilliland

Nikka Lanzarone

Connect with Gaelen

website | twitter | instagram

Gaelen's Episode: Understudies (#43)

Where are you from? Da ‘burgh (Pittsburgh, PA)

Broadway credits: Wicked, Legally Blonde, 9 to 5, Honeymoon In Vegas, Kinky Boots

How did you hear you’d booked your first Broadway show? A Long and lovely story…starts with pointing up to the heavens threatening to “quit this business” (as if the Almighty would answer with a resounding “NOOOOOO, that could greatly affect our entire universe!!!”) And ends on a day where I played Carnegie Hall, had a quick 'lunch break’ audition, went to try on award winning costumes at the Gershwin theatre and booked my favorite and first Broadway show!! June, 6th, 2005. Wicked.  I’ll never forget it.

What is your favorite event in the Broadway community? The gypsy robe ceremony. I just witnessed a good friend receive it with such grace and honor that there wasn’t a dry eye in the place!!

What’s something about Broadway that fascinates you? The fact that we are a part of history. All the stuff I was in awe of and studied about in college is what I’m creating now. It’s pretty cool!

What, other than theatre, has inspired you recently? Huge life events of friends and family. I recently got engaged, another friend just adopted a baby, a friend has been fighting cancer, my brother turned 50, an old friend of mine just suddenly died, another friend adopted a baby, my friend’s dog died, another couple I know had a baby….and the list goes on. These are the ups and downs of life that shape who we are and how we handle each day. They are breath-taking and awe inspiring…good or bad, happy or sad. It’s beautiful!

If I could have coffee with any living person, it would be… I’d say Elaine Stritch but she’s not living anymore unfortunately. She paved the way for broads like me. Plus, what’s it like down there? Instead, I’ll say…my inner child. Somedays she really needs to wake up and take over!!!

If I could trade places with anybody for a day, I would choose… an obstetrician, given that I’d have the skills to do the job. Childbirth is fascinating to me.

To be successful in this business, it takes… a thick skin. And you’ve got to be able to be brutally honest with yourself about what and who you are. Don’t underestimate yourself and certainly don’t overestimate.

Tell us a secret. Orange zest.