PLAYBILL.COM'S CUE & A: Annie's "Grace Farrell," Brynn O'Malley

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30 Oct 2012

Brynn O'Malley
Brynn O'Malley

Brynn O'Malley, who plays Grace Farrell in the Broadway revival of Annie at the Palace Theatre, fills out's questionnaire of random facts, backstage trivia and pop-culture tidbits.

O'Malley has appeared on Broadway in Wicked (Nessarose), Sunday in the Park with George (Celeste 1), Hairspray (Amber Von Tussle) and Beauty and the Beast (Belle u/s).

Other stage work includes Avenue Q ("Kate Monster/Lucy T. Slut" in Las Vegas), Boeing-Boeing (Gabriella), Oklahoma! (Laurey), Meet Me In St. Louis (Esther), She Loves Me (Helen Hayes nomination), Arsenic and Old Lace (Baltimore Centerstage), Into the Woods ("Baker's Wife" at Kansas City Rep), Dirty Rotten Scoundrels ("Christine" at North Shore Music Theatre) and Jekyll & Hyde ("Emma" at Pittsburgh CLO).

Television credits include "The Big C," "Royal Pains" and "A Gifted Man."


Full given name: Brynn Maureen O'Malley
Where you were born/where you were raised: Southeastern Michigan-- born, raised, and schooled
Zodiac Sign:Sagittarius
What your parents did/do for a living:Dad’s in marketing, Mom’s a piano teacher. Both in fake retirement because neither can sit still.
Siblings:Meghann Kathleen, Leann Marie, Grace Kathleen, Rosemary (Rosie) Francis, Colleen (Bean) Therese and Norah Irene. I'm 2nd in that line-up.
Current audition song/monologue: I don’t know... every time I whip out "A Cock-Eyed Optimist" I see people's shoulders relax during the intro. Yo, people love a classic.
Special skills: My favorite special skill on my resume is "manual wheelchair operation" because I've been in one or pushed somebody around in one SO many times in SO many shows.

I'm employing this skill once again in Annie. Get your tickets now - I’m so super good at it.

Something you're REALLY bad at: Any movement or expression immediately following the direction "Brynn, just be sexy!"
First Broadway show you ever saw: The revival of You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown.
Where did you train? Any particularly memorable college productions? I got my BFA from the University of Michigan. (There are 3 other UofM grads in this production of Annie, by the way: Jeremy Davis, Ashley Blanchet and Desi Oakley).

My senior year we did Merrily We Roll Along and I played Mary.

Everything I’ve done since has been a let down.

If you could go back in time and catch any show, what would it be? Original productions of either Follies or Gypsy.
Current or recent show you recommended to friends: Once. A movie-musical done right!
Favorite showtune(s) of all time: “Someone In a Tree”
“Finishing the Hat”
“Now” – “Soon” – “Later”

I’ll stop there before I just list every Sondheim song in some order.

Some favorite modern musicals: Book of Mormon, Once, Thoroughly Modern Millie, Hairspray, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Urinetown
Some favorite classic musicals: Gypsy, Music Man, Oklahoma!

Everything by Stephen Sondheim

Broadway or screen stars of the past you would most have loved to perform with: Judy Garland
The one performance – attended - that you will never forget: I saw Beyonce in concert the weekend she launched her “Back to Business” tour last Memorial Day, and it made me realize that not only am I untalented and lazy, but I can never complain about my workload in any Broadway show again.

Beyonce reached out and touched a woman’s face in the front row, and the woman immediately started throwing up and praising Jesus and I totally understood her compulsion.

Most played song on your iPod: Any song by Punch Brothers
Most-visited websites: I still visit "Lost" fan sites hoping one day there will be news of its return to television. Guys… we have to go BACK!
Must-see TV show(s): “Breaking Bad”
“Game of Thrones”
“Sherlock” (BBC)
“Check It Out! With Dr. Steve Brule”
Last good movie you saw: “The Cabin in the Woods”...depending on your definition of "good."

"Awesomely unexpected" may be more accurate.

Some films you consider classics: “Elf”
“Howard's End”
Performer you would drop everything to go see: My boyfriend. Boring, obvious, honest.
Pop culture guilty pleasure: “Bachelor Pad”

I’ve never seen “The Bachelor” or “The Bachelorette” but “Bachelor Pad” was some of the finest reality television I have ever seen. The season finale this year still haunts me. It’s THE WORST. Check it out.

First CD/Tape/LP you owned: First CD was the “Newsies” soundtrack. It cost $20 and came in most comically gigantic packaging.
First stage kiss: The Harold to my Marian in The Music Man my sophomore year of HS.
Favorite or most memorable onstage role as a child/teenager: Anne in A Little Night Music when I was 16 at the local community theater. It was the 3rd musical I had ever done, and I was certain I was going to change lives with my take on the ball of yarn scene.
Moment you knew you wanted to perform for a living: When I was in high school, my voice teacher gave me her old record of Sunday in the Park and I copied onto a cassette tape (!).

I remember listening to it on the way to school and being totally late for class because I was crying in my car in the parking lot. I remember thinking, "If I can be a part of shows like this, I want to do it forever."

Cut to me getting my audition appointment for the revival and trying to cancel it because I knew if I didn’t get it, I wouldn’t be able to live with myself.

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