PLAYBILL.COM'S CUE & A: Screen and Silence! The Musical Star Christine Lakin

By Matthew Blank
04 Sep 2012


Moment you knew you wanted to perform for a living: I don't know if I knew it, but I've done it since just after I was on my parents' fireplace "stage" singing along to my Annie record at age 3. I don't think I had much choice in the matter... I guess it's always been a bit of a blessed curse that this is what I'm drawn to do.
Are you still in touch with any of the "Step By Step" crew? Yes, Patrick Duffy and Staci Keanan did an episode of my webseries "Lovin' Lakin" (a mockumentary on my life as a former child actor - watch it on Hulu or YouTube!).

We also just had an annual potluck BBQ with many of the producers and writers. It was quite a nice group of people and still very much in touch.

Out of all of your screen work, can you pick a few favorites? What were the most fun or fulfilling experiences? Certainly many of the Garry Marshall films I've done. I've been a huge fan of his movies since "Beaches" and "Pretty Woman" so getting to work with him is a dream.

"Valentines Day" was particularly fun. Jessica Biel and Jamie Foxx were both wonderful and total pros.

I also very much enjoyed working on this winter's "Parental Guidance" with Andy Fickman. I was lucky enough to choreograph and star in one of the scenes with the Divine Bette Midler, who is a legend in my eyes, as is Billy Crystal (who also stars). She was generous and lovely to me and it was a dream come true. Go see it this Christmas!

Is Craig Kilborn as cool as he seems? Yes and he makes a mean martini.
Favorite pre-/post- show meal: (note where) Pre-show could be a Larabar or a half sandwich leftover from lunch if I'm lucky. I don't eat much before performing.

But after shows I love a beer and french fries- anywhere. Laurel Tavern serves late. Timmy Nolans also has the best J. Boogie Chicken Melt and they are like family there.
Favorite liquid refreshment: Newcastle. Stella. Jack Daniels Honey on ice if I'm really feeling it.
Pre-show rituals or warm-ups: Not many. Underthinking things is usually the way I go. Now and then I steam with an actual hand steamer. It's probably not made for faces.
Most challenging role you have ever played: Toady in last year's A Christmas Westside Story was a very physical show - with winter costumes on stage. Clarice is quite challenging as well. Less so physically but drawing the line of parody and finding the specificity from the movie. It's a good challenge.
Worst flubbed line/missed cue/onstage mishap: Oh god... it was A Christmas Westside Story there was a part where I was an elf and had to give a PSA.

I decided to switch it up one night and do something completely different, which muscle memory did not agree with. Let's just say I went blank and it was awkward and humiliating for everyone, including my parents in the audience.

Worst costume ever: I'm pretty sure I just mentioned being an elf. Not particularly cute. Although Clarice's suit is pretty sexy by comparison.
Worst job you ever had: It was summer stock in a theatre mostly outside with a raccoon trap backstage. And yes, we caught one.
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