STAGE VIEWS: Book of Mormon Star Clark Johnsen
By Andrew Gans
September 1, 2012
Playbill.com's series features brief chats with actors commenting on their recent theatregoing experiences, what productions they are looking forward to and more. Here, via email, we hear from singing actor Clark Johnsen, who is currently part of the ensemble of the Tony-winning Best Musical The Book of Mormon.
What show recently impressed you?
I was absolutely blown away by Cock. (How many double entendres can you fit into a sentence?) Without any sets, costumes, visual effects, or lighting beyond the perfunctory, the performers create a fully engaging world that is both thought-provoking and haunting. Throughout the play, which takes place in the round, audience members are able to observe one another as well as the actors, adding to the depth of the experience. It was a surprising and fascinating experience in the theatre.
What production are you most excited to see?
I am really jonesing to see Kinky Boots. The cast and creative team seem like a perfect amalgamation of theatrical fireworks. Give me a teased red wig, a mini-skirt, a bunch of fabulous torch songs and an against-the-odds storyline, and I'm on Cloud 9. Oh, now it sounds like I'm talking about Annie. I'm excited about that too, truth be told. Though Annie is the most passive-agressive child in the entire pantheon of musical theatre characters, one can't help but love her. I'll be looking forward to next spring when they're both on Broadway!
What play/musical would you most like to revive on Broadway, and which role would you want to play?
This was only recently revived, and revived very beautifully I must say, but if I'm being honest my dream role is George in Sunday in the Park with George. I think that creation is a very interesting topic for an actor and an audience to explore. So many artists and writers who bring about great works do so at the expense of their own personal happiness and sometimes even their sanity. I would like to believe that the artists and creators of the world can bring beauty and insight to others while experiencing it in their own lives as well. George's journey, as two different artist Georges, living in two different times, is an insight into the challenges of creation.
What are your current/upcoming projects?
I am currently attempting to convert the world eight times a week in The Book of Mormon on Broadway. As a bonafide ex-Mormon returned missionary, the experience has been unique and wonderful beyond all description. Outside of the show, I'm spending every spare moment I can find endeavoring to write a memoir about my gay Mormon awakening, my two-year mission to Mexico, my journey out of the church, and my full circle moment: being a mormon missionary again, but this time on Broadway.
Clark Johnsen has been seen on Broadway in The Book of Mormon, The Addams Family and La Cage aux Folles. Read more about him in the Playbill Vault.