Cue & A: Fun Home Tony Nominee Beth Malone on Her Fear of Bugs, Love of Beer and "Roadkill Wig"

News   Cue & A: Fun Home Tony Nominee Beth Malone on Her Fear of Bugs, Love of Beer and "Roadkill Wig"
 
Beth Malone, a 2015 Tony Award nominee for her leading performance in Fun Home, fills out Playbill.com's questionnaire of random facts, backstage trivia and pop-culture tidbits.
Beth Malone
Beth Malone

Malone spent much of last year at the Denver Center, starring as Molly Brown in the world premiere of a wholly reimagined version of The Unsinkable Molly Brown, directed by Kathleen Marshall.

Other credits include Broadway's Ring of Fire and Off-Broadway productions of Fun Home, The Marvelous Wonderettes and Bingo!

Full given name: Elizabeth Ann Malone
Where you were born/where you were raised: Born in Auburn, Nebraska. Raised on a small ranch in Castle Rock, Colorado.
What your parents did/do for a living: Dad was an engineer, he's retired. Mom sang in bars. Now she sings at old assisted living and retirement homes and is also into Western Music. Peggy Malone, or Pickin Peggy. For real.
Siblings: 3 brothers, all older. Sean (organic farmer/oil painter). Brian (doc film maker/industrial film maker for $$). Danny (works for Haliburton doing things he says I do not want to know about).
Special skills: Springy body, rubber face.
Something you're REALLY bad at: Learning dances. I swear I can sort of do them convincingly once learned, but that day of learning the dance? That day of rehearsal?? Hell.
Who were your major mentors/inspirations when first starting out? ”Singin' in the Rain” is the reason I wanted to be an actor. But not because of Debbie Reynolds... it was Donald O'Connor. His springy body and rubber face and quick mind hooked me in and I wanted to be just like him.
First Broadway show you ever saw: Gypsy with Tyne Daly
If you could go back in time and catch any show, what would it be? I'd love to see Mary Martin do South Pacific
Current/recent show other than your own you have been recommending to friends: Hamilton
Favorite showtune of all time: Annie Get Your Gun’s score is so wonderful. Every single song.
Some favorite modern musicals: Sunday in the Park is about my favorite musical of all time. My brother Sean gave it to me on vinyl in high school, I have no idea how he knew I'd love it.
Broadway or screen stars of the past you would most have loved to perform with: Donald O'Connor
The one performance – attended - that you will never forget: Elaine Stritch in Night Music. She was really on the night I saw it, and she rolled her wheelchair right up in front of me and sang “Liaisons.” Complete perfection. And Bernadette's “Send In The Clowns”… arresting, amazing night of theatre.
Music that makes you cry, any genre: Sometimes sappy country songs. I have zero defense. I know they're manipulative but I have no defense.
MAC or PC? MAC
Most played song on your iPod: Right now?? “Mariella” by Kate Nash
Most-visited websites: Love to troll Craigslist for RV's. LOVE. We restore them.
Last book you read: “Dykes To Watch Out For”
Must-see TV show(s): “Mad Men,” “Better Call Saul,” “Bates Motel”
Three favorite cities: NY, Paris, Fruita
Favorite sport/team/player: Denver Broncos
First CD/Tape/LP you owned: Barbara Mandrell Gospel Album
First stage kiss: With my now BFF, both of us gay. It was Cabaret and we had to hold it for 8 measures!
Favorite or most memorable onstage role as a child/teenager: Fred in Once Upon a Mattress
Favorite pre-/post- show meal: Sushi before, beer after
Favorite liquid refreshment: Beer, beer and um beer
Pre-show rituals or warm-ups: Push-ups. Alison has awesome arms.
Worst flubbed line/missed cue/onstage mishap: Oooh I hate going up! I don't even want to talk about it!
Worst costume ever: I had a terrible wig in Annie Get Your Gun. It looked like roadkill.
Craziest audition story: Somehow I ended up at a DANCER call for Lincoln Center's South Pacific. And instead of leaving I stayed and tried to learn it. Completely demoralizing... I left in the middle. Had to call my agents to explain. Aw. Ful.
Leading lady role you've been dying to play: I want another shot at Molly Brown.
Leading man role you wish you could play: Whoever the rock star kid is in Rock of Ages. How fun would that be singing all those 80's songs?
Have you found the audience response to be different in the Broadway house with the new staging? The immersive nature of Circle in the Square makes the audience feel like they are in the show with us, so I feel like they are being reached on a much deeper level with the new staging.
Where were you when you learned of your nomination, and who were the first people you called/texted? I was in bed and I swear social media did all the texting for me.
Something about you that surprises people: I'm afraid of bugs.
Something you are incredibly proud of: My 20+ year marriage
Something you're embarrassed to admit: I have cellulite
Career you would want if not a performer: Horse trainer
Three things you can't live without: Wife, dogs, iPhone
"I'll never understand why…" … dumb people have the most kids.
Words of advice for aspiring performers: Study. Watch people you admire and find out what they did to get where they are. Most of the great ones studied.
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