DIVA TALK: Catching Up With Tony-Nominated Cinderella Star Laura Osnes

By Andrew Gans
16 Aug 2013

Osnes and Santino Fontana
Photo by Carol Rosegg

Question: Do you think that the show has a message or does it say something to you?
Osnes: Yeah, absolutely I do. Like I said earlier, I think this telling of Cinderella has a message more than any other version of it. Because it’s not left up to fate, necessarily, that the Prince and Cinderella find each other. In the other versions she happens to lose her shoe and the shoe happens to fit her. I feel like in our story, it's more about true love and the Prince and Cinderella really challenging each other to become the people they need to be and loving each other for that reason, not just because the shoe fits. They actually get a chance to know each other and fall in love with each other in our version. And this is kind of a surprise, but there’s a second event and instead of happenstance, losing her shoe, Cinderella finds the confidence in herself to say, "Find me with my shoe.” And, again, I think Cinderella’s attributes of forgiveness and charity share a good message.

Question: On a different topic, I’m really enjoying your CD of December Songs. How did that come about, tackling that song cycle?
Osnes: Thank you! That was again an unforeseen match made in heaven. I was looking to do something at 54 Below. I wasn’t in a show and was kind of looking for concert opportunities. And, Maury Yeston was wanting someone to sing a concert of his music. So 54 Below kind of knew that and paired us together. I met with Maury, and we started talking about ideas, and he introduced me to the song cycle. I didn’t know it, I had never heard it or heard of it, and getting to do that concert was very special and very unique. I made my cabaret debut just last year at the Carlyle, and that was my own show. Getting to do December Songs in a cabaret-style format was so interesting because it’s like a one-woman song cycle that actually tells a story. It feels like a theatrical experience more than a cabaret, because I didn’t talk in between. We went from one song to the next, nine songs in a row – bam  — I told the story in half an hour. I think audiences didn’t quite know what to expect, but then were completely drawn in by the end and completely into it. So it was very unique, but I loved getting to do it. It was a wonderful challenge for me. Getting to work with Maury was wonderful. He’s so generous…. He’s very jolly, and we had a wonderful time working together. It was all his idea to create the album. We weren’t planning on doing an album during the concert, but he came up to me after it was such a big success and said we have to record it. So we got back together in April of this year and recorded it in a studio.

Question: Would you want to do the song cycle again somewhere? Is there any talk of that?
Osnes: There’s a possibility that could happen. I think that because I’m doing Cinderella, until January at least, I don't have time for other concerts. If there’s another period of downtime for a while, yes, we’d definitely pick that back up and go back to 54 Below for either a one-night engagement or another week or something, but it’d probably be a little ways away if that were to happen. 

Question: Are you able to work on any other projects while you're doing Cinderella or does it take all your time?
Osnes: [Laughs.] You know, it’s definitely a load to carry the show. I still am doing little things on Monday night, random benefits concerts or galas. Santino and I are doing something for the New York Pops in September. It’s all little one-night things. So there are definitely extra-curricular activities happening, but nothing huge that I’m carrying on my own.

[For tickets visit telecharge.com. For more information visit CinderellaOnBroadway.com.]

Well, that's all for now. Happy diva-watching! E-mail questions or comments to agans@playbill.com.