PLAYBILL.COM'S CUE & A: On a Clear Day's Kerry O'Malley

Cue and A   PLAYBILL.COM'S CUE & A: On a Clear Day's Kerry O'Malley
Kerry O'Malley, currently back on Broadway in the revival of On a Clear Day You Can See Forever, fills out's questionnaire with random facts, backstage trivia and pop-culture tidbits.

Kerry O'Malley
Kerry O'Malley

O'Malley has appeared on Broadway in Cyrano - The Musical, Translations, Annie Get Your Gun, Into the Woods and Irving Berlin's White Christmas.

Screen work includes "Case 39," "The Happening," "Rounders," "Certainty," "Shameless," "Brotherhood," "Hart of Dixie," "The Mentalist," "Law & Order," "Cold Case," "Detroit 1-8-7," "Monk," "My Name Is Earl," "Criminal Minds," "Bones," "Without a Trace" and "Charmed."

Full given name: Kerry Regina O'Malley
Where you were born/where you were raised: Nashua, NH
Zodiac Sign: Virgo
What your parents did/do for a living:

Mom was an educational counselor at the Adult Learning Center in Nashua, NH, specializing in helping displaced homemakers and single parents in career re-entry. Dad was the Director of Display Systems for Lockheed Sanders, also in Nashua, NH.

Current audition song/monologue: It depends on the show. I used to do "What Did I Have That I Don't Have," but now that I am in On A Clear Day and I watch David Turner do such a wonderful job with it every night, I have retired it for a while.
Special skills: 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.
Something you're REALLY bad at: Tap
First Broadway show you ever saw: Rumors
If you could go back in time and catch any performance, what would it be? The Glass Menagerie, to see Laurette Taylor in a performance many say was unsurpassed. I also wish I could have seen Ethel Merman in Annie Get Your Gun or Gypsy.
Current show—other than your own—that you have been recommending to friends: War Horse
Favorite showtune(s) of all time: "Sit Down, John" from 1776
"Little Tin Box" from Fiorello
"I Had a Ball" from I Had a Ball
Favorite "golden age" Broadway composers: Irving Berlin, Lerner and Lane
Favorite contemporary Broadway composer: Jeanine Tesori
Some favorite musicals: 1776, Annie Get Your Gun, She Loves Me, Sunday in the Park with George, Sweeney Todd... oh, far too many to mention.
Stage or screen stars of the past you would most have loved to perform with: Ethel Merman, Tammy Grimes, Barbara Harris, Robert Preston, Humphrey Bogart, Clark Gable, John Wayne, Spencer Tracy
Your personal vocal idols, living or dead: Judy Garland, Karen Morrow, Rebecca Luker, Rosemary Clooney, Judy Kuhn, Audra McDonald, k.d. lang
The one performance – attended - that you will never forget: Janet McTeer in A Doll's House
Music that makes you cry, any genre: "Love Is Everything" by Jane Siberry, sung by k.d. lang
"Lover, You Should Have Come Over" by Jeff Buckley
"Monopoly" by Shawn Colvin
"Let Him Fly" or "Nobody's Crying" by Patty Griffin
"This Must Be the Place (Naive Melody)" by The Talking Heads, sung by Shawn Colvin
"Leave Me Here" by Hem
Most played song on your iPod: My vocal warmup
Most-visited websites: (for all Boston sports news)
Last book you read: "Willpower" by Ray F. Baumeister and John Tierney
Must-see TV shows: "Homeland," "Shameless," "Brotherhood" and "Glee" anytime Mike O'Malley is on it.
Last good movie you saw: "Buck," about the man who was the inspiration for "The Horse Whisperer."
Some films you consider classics: "Gone With the Wind"
"A Star Is Born"
Performer you would drop everything to go see: John Hiatt
Favorite cities: Boston, New York, Dublin
Favorite sport/team/player: Boston Red Sox, Big Papi or Jason Varitek
Boston Celtics, Ray Allen or Kevin Garnett
Boston Bruins, Timmy Thomas
New England Patriots, Tom Brady
First CD/Tape/LP you owned: First CD was Michael Jackson's "Thriller."
Favorite or most memorable onstage role as a child/teenager: Snoopy in You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown
How you got your Equity card: An understudy position at the American Repertory Theatre upon graduation from their Institute for Advanced Theatre Training at Harvard University.
Favorite liquid refreshment: Absolut Boston with apple cranberry juice and tonic
Pre-show rituals or warm-ups: Vocal warmup on my iPod, drink a cup of tea, have an Emergen-C
Most vocally challenging role you have ever played: Joan of Arc (in a chamber musical by Mel Marvin and Laura Harrington), and the Duchess of Malfi
Worst flubbed line/missed cue/onstage mishap: I messed up my words in "Moments in the Woods" during a preview performance at the Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles in our pre-Broadway tryout of Into the Woods. Fortunately, there are railroad tracks in the score, and by trusting Paul Gemignani, I was able to get back on track.


It was an absolutely terrifying experience. Mr. Gemignani comforted me with battle tales of other people going up in their lyrics in Sondheim shows, so I knew I was in good company. We did the show for a year, and from that moment on, I ran my lyrics before doing that song every night. Every single night.

Worst costume ever:

I did a production of Richard III at the Georgia Shakespeare Festival, an outdoor theatre. There were many sword fights and many men sweating profusely in their non-washable wool garments. I didn't wear one, but you could smell the men from across the stage. Not fun.

Worst job you ever had: I was a chambermaid at the Green Ridge Turkey Farm Motel, in Nashua, NH. I cleaned up a lot of beer, blood and cigarettes.
Who have you played on "Law & Order"? What editions?

I played Leslie Merrick, the daughter of a woman who was killed by a stray bullet, in "Law & Order" episode "Slave." Millie Bender, the wife of a man who was killed by bounty hunters (and I was killed by a shotgun blast) on "Law & Order" episode "Hunters."

Megan Carlisle, a woman who was repeatedly raped and impregnated on "Law & Order: SVU" episode "Confrontation."

Alice Darnell, a fancy schmancy defense attorney on "Law & Order: LA" episode "Westwood."

Some favorite screen or commercial gigs: I recur on Showtime's "Shameless," which I adore; I recurred on Showtime's "Brotherhood," which was exquisite, and I played a murderous mother and got set on fire in "Case 39" with Renee Zellweger.
Leading lady role you've been dying to play: Dot in Sunday in the Park with George
Leading man role you wish you could play: John Adams in 1776
Something about you that surprises people:

I wanted to go to the Naval Academy. I wasn't an athlete, which made getting a commission unlikely. I went to Duke University as a Marine option Naval ROTC candidate, which I immediately gave up when my first sailing weekend conflicted with a musical I had just been cast in (Maltby and Shire's Baby).

I think if I had been a man I would be a career officer in the Marines. I still hope I will get to play an officer in a film some day.

Something you are incredibly proud of: I have made a living solely as an actor since I graduated from school. I have never had a "survival" job.
Career you would want if not a performer: Disaster Relief or a front office position in Major League Baseball
Three things you can't live without:

I hope I never have an occasion to seek the answer to this question. I am grateful for everything: my health, my family, my sweetheart, my friends, my education, my upbringing, my colleagues, my unions, my opportunities. Let's make it easy: I can't live without water, food and shelter.

"I'll never understand why…" ... people were so hard on Bill Buckner. There was a Game 7.
Words of advice for aspiring performers: Say what you mean and mean what you say. Don't move on the punch line. Cheat out. Get your face up-- if I can't see you, I can't love you. And most importantly, Work Hard and Be Nice to People.
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