Meet the New Class of Broadway’s Something Rotten!

Special Features   Meet the New Class of Broadway’s Something Rotten!
 
The Broadway hit welcomes more replacements to the Renaissance. Do they love or hate Shakespeare? What rock star do they geek out over? Who is most likely to flub a line?
Brad Oscar and Rob McClure
Brad Oscar and Rob McClure Joan Marcus

July 16 marked graduation time for many of the original cast of Something Rotten! as Kate Reinders, Heidi Blickenstaff, John Cariani and Christian Borle bid adieu to the show that brought audiences Omelette the Musical, dancing eggs and a never-ending list of puns and double-entendres. As these originals follow Brian d’Arcy James (who ended his run on May 29) to their next projects, the new cast hinted at the personalities adding to the mix with their own Senior Superlatives.

ROB MCCLURE – Class President, Most Likely to Break Character

HR - Rob McClure.jpg
Rob McClure

Something Rotten! character: Nick Bottom
Love or hate relationship with Shakespeare: “I am an avid lover of Shakespeare. [His work] speaks to a sense of passion. He writes characters who we watch run out of options as the stakes get higher and higher. It’s perfect storytelling.”
Favorite Shakespeare play: Hamlet. I want to play Hamlet ASAP. It's like Sweeney Todd or Breaking Bad; with the right combination of events, a good guy can turn bad.”
Most likely reason to break character: “Working with this many comic geniuses. It's a constant struggle not to make a fool of myself by chuckling.”
Most memorable geek-out moment at a concert—a la “Will Power”: “When I was 20, I broke up with a girlfriend and was feeling down in the dumps. To cheer me up, my older sister, Stephanie, insisted I go with her to see the Justified/Stripped tour with Christina Aguilera and Justin Timberlake. They rocked it. I was [going crazy] just like the ensemble in ’Will Power.’”
The cast of SR would vote him: “Most likely to be eating something delicious that is terrible for you.”
Most likely music to be playing when he should be working: “Bluegrass and Southern Gospel.”
Most likely way SR’s Nostradamus would incorrectly identify his future claim to fame:Chaplin would be The Griddle Champ.”

LESLIE KRITZTER – Class Vice President, Most Likely to Ad Lib

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Leslie Kritzer Monica Simoes

Something Rotten! character: Bea
Love or hate relationship with Shakespeare: “Love. Definitely.”
Favorite Shakespeare play: Hamlet. Always.”
Most likely way in which she’ll make a fool of herself in SR: “I would either trip by accident or go up on a lyric. I would then literally make up some gibberish to get back on the train. I’m really good at that and it makes it more interesting for me…if I’m in the mood to give myself a heart attack.”
Most memorable geek-out moment at a concert—a la “Will Power”: “When I got cast as Bea I said, ‘Guys, I’m so excited to do the show, but I can’t be there July 23 because I’m going to see Guns N’ Roses.’ I’ve never seen them before, and I am so excited!’”
The cast of SR would vote her: “Class Clown or Most Assertive.”
Most likely to obsess over: “Nancy Drew books. I have almost the entire collection. I’m obsessed with tornadoes, and I want to go storm chasing one day. Also, my fear of bees. I’m terrified. It’s weird.”

WILL CHASE – Class Historian, Most Likely to Confuse a Quick Change

Will Chase
Will Chase Joseph Marzullo/WENN

Something Rotten! character: Shakespeare
Love or hate relationship with Shakespeare: ”Love.”
Favorite Shakespeare play:Hamlet, only because it’s the first monologue I ever learned for my first professional audition. I did ‘What a piece of work is a man,’ so every time in rehearsals for SR when I get to say that, it gives me a cheeky little laugh.”
Most likely reason to give up a role to Christian Borle: “I did all the readings for SR, but by the time it was coming to Broadway I was working on Nashville. Christian and I are very good friends, so we joke about me giving it to him for a TV show. Because I’ve already done some of SR, some of it’s in my bones, but some of the show hadn’t been written yet, so it’s new too.”
Most likely way in which he’ll make a fool of himself in SR: “Quick changes that I have to do on stage after Omelette the Musical. Or, I’ll fall off a platform.”
Most likely consequence of falling off a platform: “This phone call: ‘Christian, Will’s out [because] he’s a fool, can you come back and do it for a week? He hurt himself.‘ Christian will be foaming at the mouth and answer, ‘Yes!‘”
Most memorable geek-out moment at a concert—a la “Will Power”: “Rush, the Hold Your Fire tour. That’s when I was a geeky 17-year-old with a mullet, and I was air drumming. Now, as a grown-up, my Metallica shows. I’m old so I wear earplugs, but Metallica at Madison Square Garden in the round is pretty rad.”
Moment in SR at which he is most likely to break into his southern drawl from Nashville: “I have played around with it when Shakespeare goes, ‘I can’t believe I’d ever come up with this sh*t…’ but I don’t think that’s going to happen. I thought it would be fun if I came out in a cowboy hat and threw it, but that might be a move for a TV star has-been. Let’s see how bored I get in three months and then maybe I’ll go into some Luke Wheeler [his Nashville character].”
The cast of SR would vote him: “Most Likely to Call Out of the Show Because I Got Another TV Job.”
Most likely show to binge-watch when he should be working: “I watch the British version of The Office for comfort. I’ve probably watched all of The West Wing, seasons one through seven, twenty times. When I’m a little stressed out, I strap on The Office or The West Wing, and I’m good to go.”

JOSH GRISETTI – Class Secretary, Most Likely to Forget to Pack His Props in His Pants

Josh Grisetti
Josh Grisetti

Something Rotten! character: Nigel Bottom
Love or hate relationship with Shakespeare: “Love-Hate. I am not a lover of unabridged Shakespeare. It’s very difficult to get through three hours of just pure Shakespeare, much of which is redundant.”
Favorite Shakespeare play: “The ones that are really accessible and done all the time. A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Hamlet, Macbeth. A personal favorite of mine has always been Henry V. I won’t lie, I’m also a sucker for Romeo and Juliet. I played [Midsummer’s] Bottom in college, and that’s the only Shakespeare I’ve ever done! SR is close enough.”
Most likely way in which he’ll make a fool of himself in SR: “I will reach into my pants, rummaging around to find out that I have not pre-set any props inside of them, so it will look like I’ve just been pissing in my pants. That will probably be a little embarrassing. It can look entirely inappropriate if the prop situation goes south- no pun intended. Then it’s really Something Rotten. People will literally throw eggs.”
Most memorable geek-out moment at a concert—a la “Will Power”: “I have never once been to a rock concert. Sadly, I am such an old man that I am like Nigel in some weird way. The concerts I go to are at the Met. It’s the Philharmonic.”
The cast of SR would vote him: “Most Likely to Forget a Prop Off Stage. I don’t think I enter a single scene where I don’t have a prop. At some point, whether it’s day one, or six months from now, I have a feeling I’ll come in without holding the tiny little prop I was supposed to carry.”
Fact most theatregoers wouldn’t know about him: “I wrote a book [God in My Head: The true story of an ex-Christian who accidentally met God], and they also wouldn’t know that I have a very intense phobia of dentists from childhood trauma. That is the jump off point for what the book is about.”

CATHERINE BRUNELL – Class Treasurer, Most Organized

Catherine Brunell
Catherine Brunell

Something Rotten! character: Portia
Love or hate relationship with Shakespeare: “Love-Hate.”
Favorite Shakespeare play: “In high school we studied Hamlet for an entire semester. It was so special that I ended up loving Hamlet, and then I loved Much Ado and the character Beatrice so much. I actually have a daughter named Beatrice, not necessarily named after the character, but it’s ironic that she’s one of my favorites. I’ve also seen some terrible Shakespeare productions, they were tough to stomach.”
Most likely way in which she’ll make a fool of herself in SR: “I will get an over-acting injury, or I will be a line-flubber. I will somehow bruise myself or my ego.”
Most memorable geek-out moment at a concert—a la “Will Power”: “Huey Lewis and the News. I saw them when I was a kid, and it was like I had died and gone to heaven. I was obsessed with Huey Lewis.”
The cast of SR would vote her: “Most Likely to Take a Nap Between Shows, or Most Likely to Eat Too Much During Dinner and Complain about Her Corset the Entire Show.”
SR legacy: “I started the dollar Saturday pool at the St. James when I began with the ensemble of SR in December. Theatre tradition says you go around to collect a dollar from everyone, and they’ve written their name or initials on a bill. At intermission one bill is pulled, they’re the winner—they win the pot. So I will go down in history for starting Dollar Saturday.”
Most likely to obsess over: “Organizing and label-making. I have a deep passionate love for label-makers and labeling things. Also, Back to the Future. I think I’ve watched it 50 times.”

Follow Iris Wiener on Twitter at @Iris_Wiener.

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