DIVA TALK: The Elphabas of Wicked; Looking Back at a Decade of Interviews

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25 Oct 2013

Willemijn Verkaik

Willemijn Verkaik, interview from April 2013

The challenges of the role:
Verkaik: Well, you know, it's one of the toughest roles in musical theatre, I think, for a woman to play because it's a very emotional journey, but yet you also have to have the vocal range. The challenge is to every day do that again and have that stamina and be able to go through all of the emotional stages that she goes through. That's hard work, and you have to do that eight shows a week. It's a challenge. Because it's also so rewarding, and it makes the challenge really great to take on every night.

Favorite moment in the show for Elphaba:
Verkaik: Well, I mean, I couldn't not say a lot of the scenes are great, but I always enjoy a very little scene, which is between Fiyero, Glinda and Elphaba. It's the train station because it's so awkward, and I always enjoy that. It's just a tiny moment, but it's such a sweet moment, and I always love, love to do that.

Why she believes the musical is successful wherever it is produced:
Verkaik: Well, apart from that, the music is great, and the staging and everything is so fantastic. It's also the story that people can relate to. I get a lot of people writing me letters or after the show at the stage door telling me that they can recognize stuff in Elphaba in their own lives. People connect to that—to that feeling different—maybe one moment in their life or maybe for a longer period. And, I think that is something that everyone in every country—it doesn't matter where you come from—you can recognize that, and that's why I think it works so well.

To read the full interview, click here.

[For tickets visit WickedtheMusical.]


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

PHOTO ARCHIVE: Celebrating Wicked on Broadway

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Norbert Leo Butz and Idina Menzel
Photo by Joan Marcus

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