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Posts Tagged ‘Playwrights Horizon’

Andrew Keenan-Bolger is yet another one of our next generation actors on the rise! On Broadway, he has starred in “Seussical,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “A Christmas Carol,” and currently “Mary Poppins,” playing “Robertson Ay” (taking over the role from fellow “Adaumbelle’s Quest” Mark Price). Around the country, Andrew has been on the First National Tours of “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” (playing “Leaf Coneybear”) “The Grinch” (playing “Max”), “Mary Poppins” (also playing “Robertson Ay”), and “Ragtime.” His other theatrical credits include “It’s A Bird, It’s A Plane, It’s Superman” (Dallas Theater Center), “High School Musical” (NAMT), and “Perez Hilton Saves The Universe” (2008 NYC Fringe). Andrew is also sought after for many theatre workshops/readings. Some of his more recent ones have been “Crutchy” in Disney’s “Newsies,” “Mike TeeVee” in “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” (Marc Shaiman/Scott Whittman, director Sam Mendes), “Jesse” in “Truck Everlasting,” “Omar” in Disney’s “Aladdin,” and “Hal” in “Rocket Scientist” (Playwright’s Horizon).

In addition to theatre, Andrew has shined in such films and TV shows as Nickelodeon’s “The Naked Brothers Band” (“Christophe”), “Marci X,” “One Life To Live,” weekly commentator on FNMTV on MTV, and the hit web series “The Battery’s Down.”

On Monday, February 7, you can catch Andrew along with Lindsay Mendez in Ryan Scott Oliver’s Songbook release concert at 7pm and 9:30pm at Joe’s Pub in New York City!  You can also catch Andrew 8 nights a week on Broadway in Disney’s “Mary Poppins” as “Robertson Ay” at the New Amsterdam Theatre (42nd Street & 7th Avenue) in New York City! For much more on Andrew be sure to visit http://www.andrewkeenanbolger.com

1. Who or what inspired you to become a performer? My sisters are my biggest inspiration. My sister Maggie and I grew up watching Celia perform. When you’re a kid and your big sis is doing something she thinks is cool you’re bound to follow in her footsteps.

2. What is the highest and lowest note you can sing? Oh jeez. I don’t honestly know. I just try to bark out whatever’s on the page.

3. Who is the one person you haven’t worked with that you would like to? I’ve always wanted to work with Michael John LaChiusa. He writes the most ingenious, challenging material in modern musical theatre. I can now cross Ryan Scott Oliver off that same list 🙂

4. What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? To always wear blinders. It’s easy to compare yourself and your achievements to people around you. The time you spend looking side to side, other people are moving forward.

5. If you couldn’t be doing what you are doing now, what career would you choose? If I wasn’t an actor, I’d probably be involved in some aspect of filmmaking. Either editing or directing.

6. Favorite place to rehearse/practice on your own? It’s such a cliche, but my shower. I’ve come up with some crazy shit standing under that faucet.

7. Favorite way to stay in shape? I try to walk to Shake Shack rather than take the subway.

8. Boxers or Briefs? Briefs.

9. Favorite website? I really love flavorwire.com. It’s a totally hipster culture blog filled with lots of free music, art and news stories.

10. Superman or Wonder Woman? Absolutely Superman! I spent last summer working on the Strouse and Adams musical of the same name and became fascinated with America’s long obsession with the caped hero.

BONUS QUESTIONS:

11. Do you have any strange or unusual talent that nobody knows about? I make a mean grilled cheese.

12. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? My boyfriend, Brian Letendre 🙂

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When three time Tony Award nominee Kelli O’Hara sings, people listen! People listen so intently they are taken away from their daily lives to another world, a world of extraordinary talent, beauty and passion. I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Kelli after her triumphant opening night of her one woman show “Beyond the Ingenue” at Feinstein’s at the Regency (click here for my review).

From Oklahoma to New York City, Kelli O’Hara moved here to pursue her dream of becoming a performer and a performer she has become, in every sense of the word! Kelli made her Broadway debut in “Jekyll & Hyde” then going on to star in “Follies,” “Sweet Smell of Success,” and “Dracula.” Kelli earned her three Tony Award nominations in a row: her first nomination was for her performance in “The Light in the Piazza” co-starring Matthew Morrison, she received her second nomination for her performance in “The Pajama Game” co-starring Harry Connick Jr, and her third nomination was for her performance in “South Pacific,” co-starring Paulo Szot and Matthew Morrison.

In between “The Pajama Game” & “South Pacific,” Kelli made her Carnegie Hall debut in the NY Philharmonic production of “My Fair Lady” and released her debut album “Wonder in the World.” Kelli then went on to perform solo concerts at some of the biggest halls in New York and DC including Carnegie Hall, The Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center, Town Hall, Cooper Union, Joe’s Pub, and Cafe Carlyle.

Off-Broadway and regionally, Kelli has been seen in “Sunday in the Park with George” (Reprise) “My Life With Albertine” (Playwright’s Horizons), and “Beauty” (La Jolla Playhouse). In addition to theatre, Kelli’s film and television credits include “The Dying Gaul,” “Alexander Hamilton,” “NUMB3RS,” “All My Children,” and the upcoming animated series “Car Talk.”

There are two chances now to catch Kelli live on stage: Now through October 30 at Feinstein’s at the Regency in her one woman show “Beyond the Ingenue” and then November 18-21 in “Bells Are Ringing” at Encores! For more on Kelli, be sure to visit http://www.kelliohara.com.

1. Who or what inspired you to become a performer? My voice teacher Florence Birdwell in Oklahoma. She’s pretty amazing. She was my mentor and inspired me to come here and do what I’m doing.

2. What’s the highest and lowest note you can sing? Well, I sang a high F above high C in “Magic Flute,” an opera. The lowest note I sing is probably F below middle C.

3. Who’s the one person you haven’t worked with that you would like to? Mmmm…Hugh Jackman because I almost have worked with him a few times and it just hasn’t worked out yet. I would also love to work with Megan Mullally.

4. If you couldn’t be doing what you are doing now, what career would you choose? I would be a teacher. I love teaching. I teach, but not full time, just when I can. What do you teach? I teach musical theatre master classes.

5. What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? No one’s me. So I’m the only one who can do things the way I do them.  So be proud of it and sell it.

6. Favorite way to stay in shape? Jogging.

7. Favorite skin care product? Clinique Exfoliating scrub.

8. Favorite store to shop in? Anthropology for sure.

9. Favorite website? Etsy.com

10. Superman or Wonder Woman? Wonder Woman.

BONUS QUESTIONS:

11. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? My husband, Greg Naughton.

12. Do you have any strange or unusual talent that nobody knows about? I can imitate people’s walks almost perfectly.

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If you are looking for a performer with strong vocals, good looks, and most of all talent, then Curtis Holbrook is your guy! A performer on the definite rise, Curtis has delighted Broadway audiences in “Xanadu,” “Follies,” “All Shook Up,” “The Boy From Oz,” “Taboo,” “Fosse,” and “Footloose,” and the current Broadway revival of “West Side Story.”  His Off-Broadway credits include “Saved!” at Playwrights Horizon and “Radiant Baby” at the Public Theater. Curtis has also lit up the screen in such films and television shows as “Hairspray,” “Across the Universe,” “Law and Order: SVU,” “Sesame Street,” “All My Children,” and “As The World Turns.” Curtis can currently be seen in “Frog Kiss” (along with fellow “Adaumbelle’s Quest” participant Kate Pazakis) produced by Brierpatch Productions as part of the NYMF festival from September 30-October 11 at the Theater at St. Clements (423 West 46th Street).

1. Who inspired you to become a performer? First, I would have to say my mother…Because she put in me in tap class at the age of 2 🙂 But when I was old enough to know what being inspired was, I saw Gene Kelly and Donald O’Connor in Singin’ in the Rain. That moment was truly magical for me. I was hooked.

2. What is the highest and lowest note you can sing? I don’t actually read sheet music…I do everything by ear. I try not to think about what notes I am singing because it can mess with your head, ya know?…But I think when we filmed Across the Universe I sang a high D.

3. Who is the one person you haven’t worked with that you would like to? Just one? There are so many!!! Well even though it isn’t possible…Bob Fosse. His way of storytelling is like no other.

4. If you couldn’t be doing what you are doing now, what career would you choose? Marine Biology.

5. Do you have any rituals that you must do before a show? Depends on the show… Usually, I listen to music that could be the soundtrack of the characters life… That helps to get me focused and fired up. How do you decompress after a show? An adult beverage.

6. Do you have any strange or unusual talent that nobody knows about? Hand Farting.

7. Favorite ride at an amusement park? All of them! The X Factor @ Magic Mountain might be my favorite though.

8. Favorite way to stay in shape? Really just by doing what I do…and Yoga. I don’t do gyms.

9. Boxers or Briefs? Really??? If you must know…square cut boxer briefs. So both!

10. Favorite website? YouTube.

11. Superman or Wonder Woman? Batman.

BONUS QUESTIONS:

12. What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? My Grandfather always told me…”Think For Yourself.”

13. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? My wife 🙂

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Ryan Scott Oliver is an award winning lyricist and composer to keep watching! He is the recipient of the 2009 Jonathan Larson Grant as well as the winner of the 2007 Margo Lion Award for Excellence in Adaptation (along with Kirsten Guenther who wrote the book) and the 2008 Richard Rogers Award for writing the music and lyrics to “Mrs. Sharp,” which ran at Playwrights Horizons in July 2009 starring Tony Award Winner Jane Karkowski. His other awards include the first ever ASCAP Foundation Harold Adamson Award for Excellence in Lyric Writing, the John Denver New Composers Award, and the Looking Glass Theatre Favorite Award for “Out of My Head” (Book by Kirsten Guenther). He wrote the Music and Lyrics to “Darling” (Book by B.T. Ryback), “A Day in Space (Book by Brian Paul Mendoza), the Music to “Angus Oblong’s The Debbies” (Book/Lyrics by Gordon Leary), the Book and Lyrics to “Circle Nine” (Music by Brian Valencia), the Book, Music, and Lyrics (along with B.T. Ryback) to “Quit India,” which was commissioned by UCLA. Ryan’s  work has also been heard on the hit YouTube TV show “The Battery’s Down” as well as in showcases presented by Summer Play Festival (SPF), The York Theatre, Goodspeed Musicals, New York Theatre Barn, Monday Nights New Voices (produced by fellow “Adaumbelle’s Quest” participant Scott Alan), and the Festival of New American Musicals in Los Angeles. Most recently, Ryan Scott Oliver presented evenings of his work, with a host of Broadway talents at Los Angeles’ Boston Court Performing Arts Center,  Joe’s Pub in New York City, and the Kennedy Center in Washington DC. He is currently working on “35mm,” a multimedia musical exhibition based on photographs by Matthew Murphy, as well as “We the People” which has been commissioned by Broadway Across America for TheatreWorks USA and is supposed to be presented Off-Broadway in 2010. To find out more on Ryan Scott Oliver be sure to visit: http://www.ryanscottoliver.com or TheBestArts for Ryan’s dedicated page with footage of his music being performed by Broadway’s talent.

1. Who inspired you to become a performer? All my teachers in middle school and high school, especially the ones that are in jail now.

2. When did you realize you wanted to become a songwriter/composer? It started in vitro, but I couldn’t bring the piano out with me during birth—so I didn’t come back to it till middle school, but seriously began working when I was a Junior in high school when I began work on the epic musical of The Crucible. In college, I realized that I would never get the rights over Arthur Miller’s dead body, but then fortunately, he died.  Unfortunately, I still don’t have the rights.

3. Who is the one person you’d like to have sing your songs that hasn’t already? Gavin Creel.  I need his voice like you need to try the Black and White cake at Amy’s Bread in the West Village.

4. Do you have any strange or unusual talent that no one knows about? I can flick my tongue freakishly fast.  Too bad that’s completely of no use to me.  And I know morse code, dit-dah-dit.

5. Favorite way to stay in shape? I keep my “shape” (and I use the term loosely) by going to the gym 4 times a week, for roughly 4 months out of the year.

6. Boxers or Briefs? Boxer-briefs!  Duh!

7. Starbucks or Dunkin’ Donuts? What do you order? Starbucks because Dunkin’ Donuts I associate with being careless and fat.  Starbucks I associate with being careless and rich.  Clearly the latter is more attractive.  Unless I’m at the airport, in which case I visit Dunkin Donuts, because if you’re going to propel yourself 36,000 miles in the air where it’s better to be whetted than wealthy.

8. Favorite musician/singer? Awfully fond of Rufus Wainwright, Jason Mraz, and The Killers.  Among so many others!

9. Favorite website? I like StraightDope.com a lot.  Chockfull of useless, intriguing information that makes any dumb person feel brilliant.  Also great for long nights of insomnia (it tires your mind OUT).  And of course I’m also particularly fond of the brand new writer’s blog crazytownblog.com. 🙂  Wink.

10. Superman or Wonder Woman? I choose BATMAN!  I love Batman. 🙂

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