FROM THE ARCHIVES: Michael Urie Shares His 10 Favorite Theatregoing Experiences

From the Archives   FROM THE ARCHIVES: Michael Urie Shares His 10 Favorite Theatregoing Experiences
 
In 2012, stage and screen star Michael Urie, then making his Broadway debut in the revival of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, shared the performances that most affected him as part of the audience.
Make Believe_Atlantic Theater Company_Off Broadway_Opening Night_2019_Michael Urie_HR.jpg
Michael Urie Joseph Marzullo/WENN

Michael Urie, on the New York stage earlier this season in Bess Wohl’s Grand Horizons, has also been seen on Broadway in the revival of Harvey Fierstein's Torch Song as well as Off-Broadway in The Temperamentals, Angels in America, The Government Inspector, The Cherry Orchard, A Bright Room Called Day, and Shows for Days. He was also acclaimed for his performance in Jonathan Tolins’ solo show Buyer & Cellar, which won him a Clarence Derwent Award in addition to a Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Solo Performance.

While making his Broadway debut in 2012 in the revival of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Urie shared the 10 Broadway performances that most affected him as part of the audience.

READ: Why Torch Song’s Michael Urie Won’t Let Arnold Go

Bill Irwin
Bill Irwin

Bill Irwin in Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
The whole cast was incredible, but it was hard to look away from Irwin. I never understood that play until him.

Wrong Mountain
David Hirson's brilliant play about the state of commercial theatre was a critical and box-office flop, but I saw it twice! Incredible characters, side-splittingly funny, and a call to arms for any theatre artist. When Daniel Davis did an episode of Ugly Betty, I stalked him in his trailer to gush and then got to watch him be brilliant every day in The Cherry Orchard.

Uncle Vanya at Classic Stage Company
Best. Chekhov. Ever. Austin Pendleton's electric production was like being invisible, watching life happen. Denis O'Hare = Genius (the whole cast was, really).

Zachary Quinto and Christian Borle in Signature Theatre's production of <i>Angels in America</i>
Zachary Quinto and Christian Borle in Signature Theatre's production of Angels in America Joan Marcus

Angels in America
Getting to watch a show that you know you're joining is already a very special experience, complex and wonderful, but seeing Michael Greif's production of Tony Kushner's perfect play at the Signature Theatre made time stand still for me. Seven hours in a tiny room felt like a world tour, hilarious and devastating.

Max Wright in Twelfth Night
As Sir Andrew, he made me want to become a Shakespearean actor. His speech was natural, hilarious, and completely classical. He had the audience in the palm of his hand and said every word like he'd made it up on the spot.

Ragtime
My first Broadway show, at 17 years old, absolutely blew my mind. The sheer volume of the cast, size of the sets, and intimacy of a Broadway theatre (the Fair Park Music Hall in Dallas was huge). I can remember almost every second of it, down to the talkback my college group got with members of the company, the fantastic Peter Friedman and wee Lea Michele!

Victor Garber, Alfred Molina, and Alan Alda
Victor Garber, Alfred Molina, and Alan Alda

Alan Alda, Victor Garber, and Alfred Molina in Art

They destroyed this show! Thrilling.

How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying with Ralph Macchio
At 16, I was treated to the one and only Ralph Macchio kill as Finch in the national tour in Dallas. The show was incredible, and I spent the next two years trying to convince my high school to do it so I could play Bud Frump (since Nolan Noska was sure to get Finch).

Talking Heads
A rotating cast of geniuses performed these long monologues; Christine Ebersole, Daniel Davis, and Lynne Redgrave were on the night I went. Each one more brilliant than the next. Though the Minetta Lane has 400-some seats, I felt like I was the only one they were talking to, and that it was actually someone's living room.

Urinetown

Urinetown_Broadway_Production_Photo_2001_sc+I_HR.jpg
Cast Joan Marcus

I think I literally fell out of my seat at this one. Like, really. Simply one of the most clever and original shows I've ever seen, cheap and brilliant.

Click Here to Shop for Theatre
Merchandise in the Playbill Store
 
Recommended Reading: