Hughes was the standby for Johnny in the original production, eventually taking over the role full-time and performing in the final company. Other Broadway credits include 9 to 5 and Hairspray.
He has appeared on screen in "Sex And The City: The Movie," "SATC 2," "Tenure," "Rachel Getting Married," "Book of Love," "Law & Order: SVU & Criminal Intent," "Six Degrees," "As the World Turns" and "One Life To Live."
|Full given name:||Van Michael Hughes|
|Where you were born/where you were raised:||Norfolk, VA / Chesapeake, VA|
|Zodiac Sign:||Aries/Taurus cusp|
|Current audition song/monologue:||When I met Dolly Parton at the 9 to 5 audition, I sang “Something” and played along with my ukulele. She said, “I bet you threw that yodel in just for me!”|
|Special skills:||Lariat trick roping, guitar, drums, piano, creepiness|
|Something you're REALLY bad at:||DIRECTIONS. I have no internal compass.|
|First Broadway show you ever saw:||Footloose when I was 16|
|If you could go back in time and catch any performance, what would it be?||Sunday in the Park with George|
|Current show—other than your own—that you have been recommending to friends:|| Fuerza Bruta
Sleep No More
|Favorite showtune(s) of all time:|| “Come Down Now” from Passing Strange
“Shiksa Goddess” from Last Five Years
|Some favorite modern musicals:||Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Passing Strange, Parade|
|Favorite classic musical:||Oliver!|
|Stage or screen stars of the past you would most have loved to perform with:||Charlie Chaplin, Gwen Verdon, Heath Ledger|
|Your personal vocal idols, living or dead:||Buddy Holly, John Lennon|
|The one performance – attended - that you will never forget:||Final Saturday night taping of Passing Strange. I’d never seen a roof be blown off a theatre like that before. I was weeping like a baby.|
|Music that makes you cry, any genre:||Régine Chassagne, the female vocalist in Arcade Fire. There’s something so beautifully desperate in her voice.|
|MAC or PC?||.me in a cloud|
|Most played song on your iPod:||“Behold a Marvel in the Sky” by Deerhoof|
|Last book you read:||"Cosmos" by Carl Sagan|
|Must-see TV show(s):||"Breaking Bad"!!!|
|Last good movie you saw:||"The Skin I Live In"|
|Some films you consider classics:|| "One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest"
"Pee Wee’s Big Adventure"
|Performer you would drop everything to go see:||Deerhoof|
|Pop culture guilty pleasure:||YouTube videos of skateboarding accidents|
|Favorite cities:||Brooklyn, Austin, Prague|
|Favorite sport/team/player:||Dirk Nowitzki on the Mavericks makes it look so easy.|
|First CD/Tape/LP you owned:||"Shaq-Fu" was the first CD I ever owned. It came with the Sega videogame "Shaq-Fu" where Shaquille O’Neal fought at a kung-fu tournament. He rapped on the accompanying CD, and it was awful!|
|Greatest Bands of all Time:||The Beatles, ELO, GREEN DAY!|
|Favorite or most memorable onstage role as a child/teenager:||I played Will in Will Rogers Follies at the Governor’s School for the Arts in Norfolk, VA when I was 16.
It was a thrilling production where we used sets and costumes from the 1st National Tour and a orchestra of 30 professionals! Not your normal high school experience...
|Moment you knew you wanted to perform for a living:||I saw a children’s theatre production of Mother Goose by the Hurrah Players when I was 8. After the show, I told my mom, “I can do that.” I later joined the Hurrah Players and became very inspired by Hugh Copeland to fall in love with theatre.|
|How you got your Equity card:||Hairspray in Vegas|
|Favorite pre-/post- show meal: (note where)|| PRE: Chipotle tacos
POST: La Superior tacos
|Favorite liquid refreshment:||VITA COCO. Like sticking a straw in a coconut.|
|Pre-show rituals or warm-ups:||I listen to music, drink tea, and stretch A LOT.|
|Most vocally challenging role you've performed:||Johnny in American Idiot|
|Worst flubbed line/missed cue/onstage mishap:||Because of a last-minute backstage microphone swap in American Idiot, I missed my usual entrance at the top of the stairs for “Letterbomb.” As I’m running to enter late from the wings instead, I made a split-second decision to dive and roll like a human tumbleweed across the stage. I must have rolled three times -- each one getting more air than the last before crashing into Will’s couch -- but got there right on time!|
|Worst costume ever:||In Hairspray, in the song “Without Love,” I had to be a dancing silhouette in the female jail because there weren’t enough ladies in the cast to fill all of the slots on the set. I wore a very large wig and a corset on top of my normal Sketch costume and wiggled quite girly. I hated putting that wig on everyday.|
|Favorite Green Day tunes not in the show:|| "Geek Stink Breath"
|If you could trade roles/tracks with anyone in the show for a week, who would it be?||WILL!|
|Any cities on the itinerary you're particularly excited to visit:||Seattle and San Francisco! Never been...|
|Leading man role you've been dying to play:||George in Sunday in the Park with George|
|Leading lady role you wish you could play:||Dot in Sunday in the Park with George|
|Something about you that surprises people:||I was an Elvis impersonator ages 13-16. Enough said.|
|Something you are incredibly proud of:||Billie Joe proposed to me onstage at the encore one night.|
|Career you would want if not a performer:||Astrophysicist|
|Three things you can't live without:||Maps, humidifier, plants|
|"I'll never understand why…"||... we can shoot missiles and bombs across the world, but we don’t shoot food to countries with people starving.|
|Words of advice for aspiring performers:||“The aim of art is to ask the questions clearly - not provide the answers.” Summarizing Tolstoy.|