DIVA TALK: Chatting With Bring It On: The Musical Star Taylor Louderman

By Andrew Gans
10 Aug 2012

Louderman and Neil Haskell
Photo by Joan Marcus

Question: Had Broadway been your goal as a young performer or were you thinking TV or movies?
Louderman: No, definitely Broadway. I would battle with my mother because she wanted me to do TV and film, and I didn't. [Laughs.]

Question: What about Broadway appealed to you?
Louderman: I think, for me, it was going as a little girl and watching the theatre and really being in awe of what was happening on stage and, after, getting to meet the actors. So I think that was definitely something I had grown up with. And, just the aspect of live theatre—it's happening right in front of your face. Especially with Bring It On—we're doing these cheer stunts… [There aren't any] stunt doubles. It's real life, and that's what's cool. And, things happen—if you mess up, that's the fun of it.

Question: I'm just curious how your first night on Broadway compared to what you thought it was going to be like. Did it live up to your expectations?
Louderman: Yeah. [Laughs.] Leading up to it, I would have nightmares that something would go wrong or I wouldn't please my director or something. I was just really worried that it would be stressful and just a negative energy. But the whole night was really a celebration, and I didn't anticipate that at all. We had worked so hard leading up to it that I think opening night was really just about doing a show for people who love and support us and celebrating it. There was a moment on stage where I was just like in awe as Taylor, thinking, "Oh my gosh. This is what Beyoncé feels like." [Laughs.] I was staring into this light, and I can't see, and there are people going crazy in the audience. It was an amazing feeling.

Question: How would you describe Campbell, the character that you play?
Louderman: Campbell is so, so driven. She just kind of wants to make her mark and do something that's meaningful, and I think cheerleading happens to be that path for her. But really, she just wants to make a difference and be a big person, so when she gets redistricted, I think that makes everything kind of crumble for her, and she doesn't know what to do. But she learns a lot of life lessons, and it pulls out a lot of strengths in Campbell that you get to see at the end of the show. So she's very driven. She's a nice girl. She's worked really, really, really hard. And, you have to come see the show to find out what happens! [Laughs.]

Janet Krupin, Taylor Louderman, Kate Rockwell and Elle McLemore
photo by Craig Schwartz

Question: Do you have a favorite moment for her—something that you look forward to each night?
Louderman: For her, not necessarily, but I really enjoy getting to show all of her colors. She's really nice, and so it's such an extreme for her to go into envy and rage in the end of Act I. She gets to sing about how upset she was that she was backstabbed. [Laughs.] So that's my favorite. I get to do a lot of stunting and singing and dancing all in one number, and it's just filled with energy.

Question: Were you ever a cheerleader in high school?
Louderman: No, I wasn't. I played basketball and soccer, so I was certainly athletic, and I think that helped now when I had to learn the cheerleading stuff because it definitely is a sport. [Laughs.] No, I didn't have any stunting experience.

Question: Tell me a little bit about the process of learning all the stunts because you do major ones in the show. It's not like you step aside.
Louderman: When I first started learning, it was terrifying. I never, ever thought I would be going high up in the air on two guys' hands. [Laughs.] So it was new, and it was scary. But I think, for me, it was just getting over the fear-factor because the guys do a lot of the work. We just have to stay tight and make sure that we're a statue up there for them to hold up. So after I got over being scared, it was easy, and now I prefer to do a stunt than a dance move just because I feel more comfortable doing it.

Question: How demanding is doing the show eight times a week?
Louderman: It's very, very demanding. I sleep more than I ever have. I can't go to the gym and workout. I feel guilty for not doing that, but at the same time, it's a lot because the main priority is to put on a good show every night. So I do what I can to really maintain my body and my voice. It's not easy, but you make do. You make it work.