Cue & A: An American in Paris Tony Nominee Brandon Uranowitz on Ragtime, Dream Roles and Bustle Dresses

News   Cue & A: An American in Paris Tony Nominee Brandon Uranowitz on Ragtime, Dream Roles and Bustle Dresses Brandon Uranowitz, a 2015 Tony Award nominee for his performance in An American in Paris, fills out Playbill.com's questionnaire of random facts, backstage trivia and pop-culture tidbits.

Brandon Uranowitz
Brandon Uranowitz

Uranowitz made his Broadway debut in 2011, playing Murray Schwartz and Stanley Greenberg in Baby It's You! Other credits include Mark in the national tour of Rent, Eugene in Brighton Beach Memoirs and Broadway Bound at The Old Globe and The Little Boy in the Toronto world premiere of Ragtime.

Full given name: Brandon Jacob Uranowitz
Where you were born/where you were raised: Born in Livingston, New Jersey, raised in West Orange, New Jersey
Zodiac sign: Cancer
What your parents did/do for a living: My dad is in real estate but fancies himself a pro-drummer. My mom Moms for a living and bakes things that would make you cry.
Siblings: Younger sister, Michelle
Current audition song/monologue: "With So Little to be Sure Of"
Special skills: Sitting on the couch and watching trashy TV
Something you're REALLY bad at: Returning phone calls
First Broadway show you ever saw: Peter Pan. Still don’t understand why there isn’t flying by Foy in every show.
If you could go back in time and catch any show, what would it be? Funny Girl with Babs.
Current show other than your own you have been recommending to friends: Hamilton and Fun Home
Some favorite modern musicals: Ragtime, Rent, Scottsboro Boys, Fun Home, Violet, Parade, Into the Woods, Sunday in the Park (I mean, any and all Sondheim really)
Some favorite classic musicals: Carousel, Singin' in the Rain, Cabaret, She Loves Me, Gypsy, West Side Story
Your personal performance idols, living or dead: Mark Rylance, Elizabeth Marvel, Cherry Jones, MERYL, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Barbra Streisand, Robin Williams, Fred Astaire
The one performance - attended - that you will never forget: Geoffrey Rush in Exit the King
MAC or PC? MAC. Bye, PC
Must-see TV show(s): "Breaking Bad," "The Sopranos," "Six Feet Under," "The Comeback," "Arrested Development," "Chef’s Table"
Performer you would drop everything to go see: Mark Rylance. And anything directed by Ivo Van Hove.
Pop culture guilty pleasure: "Real Housewives of Melbourne"
Three favorite cities: New York, Paris, Amsterdam
Favorite sport/team/player: Hahahahahahaha
First CD/Tape/LP you owned: The cassette of “I’m a Bitch” by Meredith Brooks. So.
Favorite or most memorable onstage role as a child/teenager: The Little Boy in the world premiere of Ragtime in Toronto. Mostly because they bleached my hair AND EYEBROWS every two weeks. I was eleven. With bleached eyebrows.
Worst flubbed line/missed cue/onstage mishap: I was playing Richard III in college, and we performed every night for an intimate in-the-round audience. It was a climactic moment in Act Five when Richard gives a speech to motivate his troupes to go into battle. I began my speech... said a line from two acts prior... that belonged to another character? Sooo, of course I went blank, but continued my blocking: crossing in a diagonal across the entire stage, with a limp, a humpback, and a mutilated arm. ALL IN COMPLETE SILENCE, a look of sheer panic and desperation in my eyes. After what felt like six hours, another actor "saved" me by interjecting, "That's a great idea, my lord!" Not what Shakespeare wrote, but THANK YOU, JESSICA.
Craziest audition story: I made the horrible mistake of going in for a director I won't name (but rhymes with Moe Jantello) with an enormous cold sore on my lip — easily the size of a large disgusting grape. I sang "I Am The One" from Next to Normal and I thought it might be funny to address the elephant in the room by strongly pointing to my lip on the first lyric, "Can you tell me what it is you're afraid of? Can you tell why I'm afraid it's me?" ... Not so funny, it turns out.
Leading man role you've been dying to play: George in Sunday in the Park with George. And Hamlet.
Leading lady role you wish you could play: Dot in Sunday in the Park with George. And Lady Macbeth.
Where were you when you learned of your nomination, and who were the first people you called/texted? I was in bed with my boyfriend Zach, at my parents' house. My parents burst into my room to tell me, literally shaking. They found out from my best friend who called my mother 'cause my phone was on silent. Then we got my sister on the phone. So I was magically able to experience the whole thing with everyone I love.
Something about you that surprises people: When I was a child I was obsessed with bustle dresses.
Something you are incredibly proud of: My ability to make a bustle dress out of a pillow, a belt, and a sheet.
Something you're embarrassed to admit: I've worn a homemade bustle dress within the last six months.
Career you would want if not a performer: Director
"I'll never understand why…" Republicans still have any clout.
Words of advice for aspiring performers: Resist the urge to compare yourself to others. You will never do what they do, and they will never do what you do. Bringing your authentic self to your work is the best gift you can give to an audience — so own it.

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