PLAYBILL BRIEF ENCOUNTER With Steve Kazee; Broadway's Once "Guy" Talks About Exiting the Hit

By Kenneth Jones
27 Mar 2013

Ben Hope as Guy in Once.
Photo by Monica Simoes

How did you leave it with the cast? How was the goodbye?
SK: Well, you know, it's hard. It was a very tough thing to not be able to be there for the last show. My goodbyes to the cast were personal, but I reached out to everyone and explained the entire situation and everything that had happened. Everyone knew exactly what was happening and knew where I was at and knew everything was OK. Yesterday was a very tough day because it's a hard thing when you lose someone from a company, but when you lose four of an original company of such a wonderful time and such a wonderful era in all of our lives, it's just, it was just a very difficult day. I was sad, I was very sad to not be able to perform my last show.

You did not attend Cristin and Will and Elizabeth's final performance?
SK: I was not there, no. I would've felt uncomfortable being here. Because Ben Hope is playing that role right now and Ben Hope is an amazing actor and an amazing performer, and I don't want to be the guy who shows up and takes away from that in any way. I'm gonna have my chance to go and see the cast and have dinner with them or talk with them on a one-on-one basis. So to show up yesterday I just thought would've been a spectacle more than anything. Because you know then the question becomes, "Well, if you're here why aren't you performing?" I said goodbye to them over email…

Are you still meeting with your vocal coach, Liz Caplan?
SK: I haven't seen her since I got injured, but we just talked the other day about getting together and having a little sing-through and seeing where my voice is at. And she is — and please put this in bold print — one of the major reasons why I was able to do that show for as long as I could. I will recommend her for the rest of my life as someone who knows the voice, knows the body, and more importantly knows the mind and the heart and helps you learn how to sing out from those two places. And not necessarily from your instrument. She's brilliant. She's like a therapist! She's like a therapist and a vocal coach wrapped into one. So I do plan on seeing her soon and just catching her up on everything.