PLAYBILL.COM'S CUE & A: 50 Shades! Star Amber Petty Talks Disney Princesses, Cold Stone Auditions and S&M Crash Courses
15 May 2014
Amber Petty, who stars in 50 Shades! The Musical, fills out Playbill.com's questionnaire of random facts, backstage trivia and pop-culture tidbits.
Petty is a performer with Baby Wants Candy, the UCB Theater and a graduate of AADA. She is the voice of Sirius/XM’s Radio "Margaritaville."
Full given name:
Amber Nicole Petty
Where you were born/where you were raised:
Mesa, AZ/Puyallup, WA
What your parents did/do for a living:
Mom was mostly a mom who specialized in driving me to multiple dance classes and community theater shows. Dad is an accountant.
Two younger sisters, Micaela and Haley.
I can twirl a baton, am a dialect coach and I fall down really well. Seriously. I have a true gift for falling to the ground.
Something you're REALLY bad at:
Cleaning my apartment. See my empty dresser and piles of clothes on the floor for details.
First Broadway show you ever saw:
Beauty and the Beast. I saw it on a high school choir trip to New York. Though it was a lovely show, I was mad I couldn't see The Producers, which was still in previews at the time. But The Producers did not have a man with a flame-based costume, so I think I won out.
If you could go back in time and catch any show, what would it be?
Mostly things Angela Lansbury was in, especially Gypsy and Sweeney Todd. I also wouldn't mind seeing the Astor Place riots. The sight of people rioting over Shakespeare probably involves far fewer monocles than my imagination would suggest.
Current or recent show other than your own you have been recommending to friends:
What I Did for Love or Grandma's Ashes at the UCB Theater or Big Black Car at the Pit
Favorite showtune(s) of all time:
What a question! I love "How Glory Goes" from Floyd Collins, "Franklin Shepard Inc" from Merrily We Roll Along (especially watch the Raul Esparza version on YouTube) and all of West Side Story
Some favorite musicals:
Sweeney Todd, West Side Story, Into the Woods
Some favorite modern plays:
I loved Stones in his Pockets, a two-person play where they play multiple characters, about a big Hollywood film that shoots in a tiny Irish town. One of the actors from the Broadway production is the eunuch on "Game of Thrones" now. He's great with or without stones.
Broadway or screen stars of the past you would have most loved to perform with:
The one performance – attended - that you will never forget:
Gypsy with Patti LuPone. When I watch a show, I'm often distracted by thinking things like "where is their mic pack hidden?" or "how are they belting that note?" or "they missed a ju glide, which is necessary even for an Americanized cockney accent."
Basically, I'm a lot of fun to see a show with. In Gypsy, which I'd seen many times with many casts, all of those thoughts were gone and I was amazed not only with Patti LuPone, but by every single person. Even the old strippers were unique and hilarious! I couldn't give my standing ovation fast enough.
Music that makes you cry, any genre:
Muppet-based songs. Honestly, "Rainbow Connection" often makes me tear up, and the "Inchworm Song" from "Sesame Street" always makes me cry.
You personal acting idols:
Kathy Bates is the best. She was just a head for half of "American Horror Story: Coven" and was still great.
MAC or PC?
Most played song on your iPod:
Right now, "Let it Go" From "Frozen." I am constantly on the edge of making a YouTube video with me singing it. Fortunately good sense wins out. For now.
Other than hotmail.com (keeping the 90's alive!), Mental Floss and New York Magazine are top sites.
Last book you read:
"Song of Spider-Man," about the Spider-Man musical. It's very interesting. Who knew webs would be so complicated?
Must-see TV show(s):
"RuPaul's Drag Race!" It's the best competition show and it has lip synching and wigs. What else do you want?
Last good movie you saw:
"All is Lost"
Some films you consider classics:
"Spinal Tap" and "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory." NOT "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory," just "Willy Wonka" with Gene Wilder.
Performer you would drop everything to go see:
Pop culture guilty pleasure:
Any baking show. I've watched the "Great British Bake Off," "Great Irish Bake Off," "Great Australian Bake Off" and the "American Baking Competition." I'll watch any English speaking nation's bakery show. It's time to step up to the plate, British Virgin Islands!