CUE & A REVISITED: What Are Your Special Skills?; Over 70 Actors Respond

By Playbill Staff
December 26, 2013

The editors of Playbill.com have combed through the past eight years of our popular Cue & A feature to select some of our favorite answers to the question, "What are your special skills?" Over 70 responses from Broadway actors follow.



(Clicking on a name bolded in blue will take readers to that actor's entry in the Playbill Vault.)

Caroline O'Connor
I can sing in French. I can make a chicken out of a towel. That’s about it.

Jonny Orsini
Flirting with older women, dancing like a goofball to 90s hip hop music.

Lisa O'Hare
"SPAVING"- spending whilst saving at the same time. Very special skill!

Evan Jonigkeit
Making a perfect soft-boiled egg.

Krystal Joy Brown
Many people don’t know that I am a contortionist, and I can crush cans with my shoulder blades.

Ben Fankhauser
Dialects, licensed driver, great with children.

Phillipa Soo
I make a really great risotto, and will knock your socks off with my chocolate chip scones.

Billy Magnussen

Keala Settle
I can hula dance.... is that special!?

Carrie Coon
Play some guitar, speak a little Spanish, track & field events, soccer

Billy Magnussen
I play guitar in a band called Reserved for Rondee. Dancing, pig calling, pogo sticks. And AMAZING at Cards Against Humanity.

Annaleigh Ashford
I can burp really loud.

Lesli Margherita
Seriously, I have none. Wait- I’m an amazing online shopper. Oh, and I bedazzle. I can bedazzle anything. And do. Judge away.

James Van Der Beek
Baseball, martial arts, and asking if you need help with the dishes when they're almost done.

Justin Matthew Sargent
I love instruments of all kinds, and dabble in a little bit of everything. I was a pretty good sax player in high school.

John Gallagher, Jr.
Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN

John Gallagher, Jr.
One-hand clapping. The straw trick — which is hard to explain so I'll just show you sometime. I can also dilate my pupils on cue, but I'm beginning to think that may not be the healthiest party favor out there and it might behoove me to cease doing it.

Christopher Sieber
I used to be able to eat a Big Mac in 2 bites...that, and renovating stuff...

Will Swenson
Works well with gays

Gavin Creel
Photo by Robert Mannis

Gavin Creel
I was a competitive swimmer all growing up. I play the piano and trumpet, and I can make a cooing turtledove sound by blowing into my hands...it's very impressive.

Matt Doyle
I'm an advanced certified scuba diver! I can also bend my fingers in all sorts of crazy ways. It's not pretty.

Chad Kimball
I do a sensible Winnie the Pooh imitation, and I can roll my belly. Fun stuff.

Santino Fontana

Santino Fontana
Ventriloquism. Except P’s, B’s, and M’s. And clapping with one hand.

Brooks Ashmanskas
Walking right past any gym and heading straight to a cheese shop.

Ashlie Atkinson
Roller derby. Whistling the opening of Guns 'n' Roses' "Patience" —perfectly. Imitating Cher, Macy Gray, and Michael McDonald — poorly.

Taylor Louderman

Taylor Louderman
I can juggle, I can cheer stunt, milk a cow and I like to do Miranda Sings impressions.

Bill Heck
Stage combat, piano, singing (lyric baritone), dance experience, directing, theatre set design and construction, carpentry, horseback riding, various athletics, pregnant stomach

Mary Catherine Garrison
Well, my minor in college was in oil painting, so I paint, draw and create any kind of craft - I make and design stationary, screen-print, sew, create cloth dolls, sew clothes from vintage patterns, cook, bake...I could go on and on. If I can — I will figure out a way to make anything.

Rebecca Naomi Jones

Rebecca Naomi Jones
I have some funny characters and voices I like to do, and I can do fun things with my big ol' eyeballs, like close 'em one at a time and other things like that. It's more fun than it sounds, I swear. And accents and dialects.

Katie Finneran
I'm a goldsmith. I make pretty gold jewelry. Blowtorches and goggles and gold... oh my...

Kate Walsh
moonwalk....kidding

Haylie Duff
Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN

Haylie Duff
I’m very domestic! I love cooking, gardening, painting and throwing pottery. And I think I’m a pretty good mom to my three dogs: Bentley, Rocco and Birdie.

Michael Arden
I can communicate almost fluently in ASL (American Sign Language) and I play the piano. I also can make the sound of a baby crying. It’s uncanny.

Sierra Boggess
Bikram yoga, ice skating, flute and burping on cue.

Adam Chanler-Berat

Adam Chanler-Berat
I have this character I do. He's an ornery, inappropriate old man named Morty. Something about the air backstage at the Booth Theatre makes him come alive.

He's become my companion character for Henry in Next to Normal. Without one, the other does not exist.

Laura Michelle Kelly
I can pee in six seconds and eat my food in record-breaking time... um not both at the same time though.

Emily Skinner
Er... cartwheel while singing a high C?

Edward Hibbert
Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN

Edward Hibbert
Flawless impersonations of celebrity British actors and actresses.

Hugh Panaro
I'm a kick-ass bartender. It's a very special skill around 5 PM!

Danny Burstein
I can make fart noises with my hands. Hugh Panaro can, I'm told, actually play fart tunes with his hands. I'm not that good yet.

Andy Karl

Andy Karl
I can turn any genuine moment into a sarcastic one in the blink of an eye.

Also play piano, guitar, rollerblade and play a mean third base in softball.

Michele Pawk
I don't know... I can fall asleep at the drop of a hat. Sometimes mid-sentence. Embarrassing.

Thomas Sadoski
The ability to turn any Baltimore Ravens game into either the reason I continue to live or the end of life as I know it.

Darren Pettie

Darren Pettie
Cat juggling

Alexandra Socha
I have a pretty decent Idina Menzel impression up my sleeve.

Rachel de Benedet
I can wiggle my nose. I watched a lot of "Bewitched" reruns after school.

Michael Esper
Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN

Michael Esper
I play guitar. And I fence. Or I did in high school. I'm better at guitar than I am at fencing. Which is, actually, not saying that much?

I bet I could still fence though. I could get into it again. But like underground, you know? Street fencing. Like fight club but with foils and French.

Nicole Parker
Other than the mainstream impersonations I did on "MADtv," I wish I had been able to do my random ones... like Andie MacDowell or Philip Seymour Hoffman.

Yul Vazquez
Divination

Adam Godley

Adam Godley
I can bend my fingers in ways that suggest I'm missing tendons.

Rebecca Luker
I can twirl a rifle, walk on a beach ball, play the piccolo and chop kindling. That's just a sample.

Caren Lyn Tackett
I'm a wife and mother. I was a Senior Level figure skater, which was my ENTIRE life from age 5 - 18.

I play bass (to write songs, not to play out or achieve Verdine White status). I write songs and theatre pieces. I knit pretty well. Also pretty good at sports. I make a mean apple pie, and I can tie a cherry stem into a knot with my tongue.

Corbin Bleu
Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN

Corbin Bleu
I love to cook and have found that I'm actually very good at it. I'm studying a lot of French-style cooking right now.

Lauren Molina
Gotta love the special skills. Playing the cello was the reason I got my big break in the revival of Sweeney Todd. I also play ukulele, guitar, bass, a bit of piano, saxophone, percussion. I just got a mandolin and I'm excited to improve.

I can do a variety of dialects, and speak French, some Spanish and Italian. I don't know if these count, but I paint, draw, do yoga, bike, rollerblade and surf.

Bryce Ryness
Vocal percussion… I was a professional beat-boxer for a year or two. No kidding.

Ari Graynor
Photo by Simon Perry

Ari Graynor
I just learned how to say "Hey ladies, what're we doing for lunch?" in Korean.

So "Speaks Korean." Obviously.

John Leguizamo
I can do accents, play basketball, I can whistle loud without using my fingers, I can bike in rush hour traffic, I speak Spanish and can butcher French, and I can order in Italian. Good with guns. I can compost. I can box.

Gavin Lee
Not a lot of special skills. I can still do a bit of "roping" from being in Oklahoma! And, I guess I can say "tap dancing upside down," which will be super useful in the future, I'm sure.

Jenn Harris

Jenn Harris
Motorcycle license, fire breathing, crying hysterically while making everyone very nervous for my life.

Alice Ripley
Running in heels, "instant" headstand, lecturing fellow subway riders about how to ride the train the right way (hello!! I am still in the doorway, would you please keep moving? You have got to be frickin' kidding me!)

Fixing beds, saving myself at the last minute.

Jason Tam
Arm pit farts, hand farts AND the lesser-known knee farts.

Matt Shingledecker

Matt Shingledecker
I can clap with one hand. Take that Zen!

Kerry O'Malley
I am very good with dialect work, and am excellent with animals. I am a proficient horseback rider, I am comfortable with a 9mm pistol, I am an excellent baseball scorekeeper, and I can cry for as many takes as you need.

Van Hughes
Lariat trick roping, guitar, drums, piano, creepiness

Emma Hunton

Emma Hunton
I can't sight-read music, so I've been able to train my brain to learn music quickly, which ends up having an equally positive effect in life.

I'm able to pick things up quickly and for some unknown reason, it doesn't go away. I'm stuck with most of the information I obtain and it's pretty hard to get it to go away. In the same vain, I also have exceptional random trivia knowledge.

Mare Winningham
I can play the guitar and the dulcimer and sing old country folk songs. I make challah, and I'm getting better at reading Hebrew.

Celisse Henderson
Hmm. I feel like anything I say will inevitably make me sound like a tool. LOL. I play a ton of instruments, babies love me, and I make mean grilled cheese sandwich.

Molly Ranson

Molly Ranson
I have some nifty levitation tricks up my sleeve, thanks to Carrie.

Michael Cumpsty
Well, I wouldn't call it special exactly, but I like to think I know how to handle Shakespeare's text. It’s really what I enjoy working on most. Well, that and REALLY shticky comedy. And sometimes both at the same time!

Tracee Chimo
Dance (mostly Fosse and tap... I'm crap at ballet), physical comedy. And for some really weird reason I can do impressions of people eating. Everyone eats in really different and interesting ways. It's always fascinated me. I have no idea why.

Bruce Dow

Bruce Dow
Aside from things theatre and music (I've written a couple of musicals that have been professionally produced - I love to compose and "noodle"), I knit and I love trying to learn languages. Am working on a new sweater, and both Cantonese and Mandarin. Growing up on the west coast, all my friends from high school are either Chinese or Jewish. Made for good eating.

Ivan Hernandez
I’m a pretty damn good soccer player.

Oliver Chris
Drinking martinis

Andrew Keenan-Bolger

Andrew Keenan-Bolger
I taught myself how to skateboard a couple years ago when I was living in L.A. I apparently missed out on that when I was in middle school. Next up: hacky sack.

Christine Lakin
Cooking, downhill skiing. Throwing parties. I love a good party. It's all in the activities.

Erin Mackey
Singing off-pitch and my "Rambo Dance." For an example of the dance, check out the Anything Goes "That's What Makes You Beautiful" video online. It's in the first 10 seconds or so.