By Matthew Blank
01 Jan 2013
Favorite pre-/post- show meal:
Pre-show would definitely be the Broadway Box from Kodama sushi in midtown. Post-show would be Fish Tacos from Reunion Surf Bar also in midtown.
Favorite liquid refreshment:
Non-alcoholic is water for sure. Alcoholic would be Johnny Walker Black.
Favorite bands of all time:
Green Day, Billy Joel, Blink 182, The Early November, James Taylor, The Avett Brothers, Bayside, Senses Fail, The Spill Canvas, Silverstein, Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band. (Just to name a few)
Pre-show rituals or warm-ups:
I usually try to stretch and roll out any tight muscles so I don't hurt myself during the show. I try to sing anything just to stay warm whether it be fooling around backstage singing something stupid or actually singing with my guitar. I just like to stay connected to the group of people around me and get that good energy flowing.
Most challenging role you have ever played:
Craziest audition story:
All of them are crazy. Auditioning is terrifying and exhilarating all at the same time. Nothing TOO drastic has happened to me yet but I'm sure it can still happen!
Worst flubbed line/missed cue/onstage mishap:
I fell off the barricade in Les Miz once and dropped 14 feet to the floor. I was 8 though so I bounced right back!
Worst costume ever:
I've loved all of the costumes that I've had to wear so far. Nothing to complain about really. I know, boring!
Worst job you ever had:
I worked at McDonalds for 6 months in NJ... drive-through... pretty terrible...
Were you familiar with Bare previously?
Yes I was! A bunch of my cast mates from Spring Awakening loved the original Bare and talked about it constantly. I always loved hearing the music, especially "Are You There?"
What has been the biggest challenge so far?
Finding and settling an arc for my character among all of the rewrites and changes that have happened. Along with it being challenging, that's what also makes it rewarding and fun. Theatre is ever-changing and the show will not stop growing. Every night will be different. That's what I love about it.
If you could trade roles with anyone in the cast for a week, who would it be?
I guess I would trade with Taylor but I definitely would not be able to pull it off as well as he does. He's just so incredible as a performer and his portrayal as "Peter" is outstanding. Honestly I love my role. I feel very lucky to have it. :-)
Any upcoming or side projects you can talk about?
As of now it's all Bare all the time. Everything else is hush hush.
Leading man role you've been dying to play:
Super cheesy but I've always wanted to play Jerry in The Full Monty. I think that role would be a blast.
Leading lady role you wish you could play:
Anita in West Side Story
Something about you that surprises people:
How short I am
Something you are incredibly proud of:
Getting to have done really incredible, unique, and life changing theatre. Not just for me, but theatre that helps other people. It's truly a wonderful feeling and I feel very lucky to do it.
Something you're embarrassed to admit:
The first song I learned on keyboard at a very young age was "With Arms Wide Open" by Creed.
Career you would want if not a performer:
The other career I have to fall back on is to be a musician. So I better look forward to a life of the struggling artist!
Three things you can't live without:
My family, my friends and music
"I'll never understand why…"
… you can't just love who you want to love and be with who you want to be with. I truly will NEVER understand it.
Words of advice for aspiring performers:
Don't. Give. Up. Being in this industry is a lot of hard work and it is also a very good test of patience and will power. Don't get discouraged by rejection. Let it fuel you and follow your dream. Don't let anyone tell you that you can't do it.You absolutely can. Be fearless. Be bold. Be you.
By Matthew Blank