CUE & A: City of Angels and Doctor Zhivago Star Tam Mutu Talks Onstage Mishaps, Sweeney Todd and His Broadway Debut

News   CUE & A: City of Angels and Doctor Zhivago Star Tam Mutu Talks Onstage Mishaps, Sweeney Todd and His Broadway Debut
 
Tam Mutu, who stars in the Donmar Warehouse's production of City of Angels and will soon make his Broadway debut playing the title role in Doctor Zhivago, fills out Playbill.com's questionnaire of random facts, backstage trivia and pop-culture tidbits.

Tam Mutu
Tam Mutu

Mutu's theatre work includes The Royal Hunt of the Sun, Love’s Labour’s Lost, Anything Goes, South Pacific (National Theater), Romeo and Juliet, King Lear (RSC), Faustus (Headlong), Chess (Toronto), Les Misérables (West End), Love Never Dies (West End), Orange Peel (Royal Court), East (Leicester Haymarket), As You Like It, Romeo and Juliet and Oh What a Lovely War (Regent’s Park Open Air).

Full given name: Tam Mutu
Where you were born/where you were raised: Hastings
Zodiac Sign: Taurus
What your parents did/do for a living: Hair dresser (Dad) and doctor's receptionist (Mum)
Siblings: One sister
Current audition song/monologue: "Who Can I Turn To?"
Who were you main mentors/inspirations when first starting out? J Jeremy Sharples, who is a best friend and like a brother to me. He has a voice from heaven. Growing up I wanted to be able to sing like him.
Special skills: Smelling good
Something you're REALLY bad at: Maths. Numbers are not my strong point. 24601?
First Broadway/West End show you ever saw: Broadway: Thoroughly Modern Millie with Sutton Foster. West End: Les Miserables.
If you could go back in time and catch any show, what would it be? The original Sweeney Todd with Angela Lansbury And Len Cariou
Current or recent show other than your own you have been recommending to friends: Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder. My friend Scarlet Strallen is just about to go into it and I think the show is very clever and fun.
Favorite showtune(s) of all time: Sweeney Todd. Every song.
Some favorite modern musicals: Chess, City of Angels, The Last 5 Years
Some favorite classic musicals: Carousel, Sweeney Todd, On the 20th Century
Broadway or screen stars of the past you would have most loved to perform with: James Dean, Marlon Brando
Your personal vocal idols, living or dead: Mario Lanza, Brian d'Arcy James, Jeremy Sharples, Hadley Fraser and "Pure Tone" Marc Elliot
The one performance – attended - that you will never forget: La Bete in NYC with Mark Rylance
Music that makes you cry, any genre: Movie scores
MAC or PC? MAC all the way
Most played song on your iPod: Tom Petty- "Free Fallin""
Last book you read: "Doctor Zhivago"
Must-see TV show(s): "Breaking Bad," "The Walking Dead," "Arrested Development," "Modern Family"
Last good movie you saw: "Wolf of Wall Street"
Some films you consider classics: "Shawshank Redemption," "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly," Disney's "Jungle Book," "The Empire Strikes Back," "12 Angry Men"
Performer you would drop everything to go see: Prince
Pop culture guilty pleasure: Country music. I love it!
Three favorite cities: Rome, New York, Istanbul
Favorite sport/team/player: Soccer, Manchester United, Neymar. American Football, Denver Broncos, Manning.
First CD/Tape/LP you owned: Michael Jackson's "Bad"
First stage kiss: I can tell you the one I enjoyed the most… maybe I shouldn't.
Favorite or most memorable onstage role as a child/teenager: Playing Curly in Oklahoma!
Moment you knew you wanted to perform for a living: The moment I stopped playing soccer.
Favorite pre-/post- show meal: Sushi from Whole Foods or Amber on Columbus Avenue
Favorite liquid refreshment: H20. And tea.
Pre-show rituals or warm-ups: I do this thing where I squawk. It's really annoying. And I skip (jump rope).
Most challenging role you have ever played: Orlando in As You Like It
What drew you to this current role and what sort of research/preparation went into it? When I found out they were doing City of Angels at The Donmar I was so excited! It's a wonderful piece. The idea of playing a film noir detective was so cool. Plus the book and the score are truly fantastic. I watched a lot of film noir movies and read several noir books. Chandler stuff was very useful.
Biggest challenge about this current project: Creating the world of the film noir onstage.
Most fulfilling or fun aspect about the project: Working with my fabulous co stars and creative team. #teamangels
Worst flubbed line/missed cue/onstage mishap: In Love Never Dies I had literally just finished "Til I Hear You Sing." And then Meg Giry enters and, as I ran up to try and cover the Christine Automaton/Mannequin, I stacked it. Badly!!! No coolness, just shame!!!
Worst costume ever: South Pacific, as a native. I looked ridiculous.
Worst job you ever had: Telesales, selling security to businesses. It was rather dreary.
If you could trade roles/tracks with anyone in the show for a week, who would it be? Oooooh I guess it would be one of the girls. Maybe Samantha Barks (the ugly one) or Rosalie Craig. They are both fabulous.
You'll soon be making your Broadway debut in Zhivago. What are your main feelings about this new adventure?

I am truly overwhelmed and delighted to finally be making my Broadway debut. "Doctor Zhivago" is a wonderful classic romantic story and I feel very lucky to share it with a whole new audience. The fact that it is a new musical version, with Lucy Simon's (the wonderful composer who brought us The Secret Garden) beautiful score, makes it all the more exciting and challenging too.

I can't wait to get started.

Leading man role you've been dying to play: Probably Sweeney Todd or Hotspur in Henry IV
Leading lady role you wish you could play: Lady Macbeth
Something about you that surprises people: I have OCD tendencies.
Something you are incredibly proud of: My nieces. They are beautiful.
Career you would want if not a performer: Soccer or tennis player, or a radio presenter. That would be fun.
Three things you can't live without: English Breakfast tea. Friends and Family. My Nikes (I love running).
"I'll never understand why…" … men can't multi-task.
Words of advice for aspiring performers: Clear Eyes, Full Hearts, Can't Lose!!!
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