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Entries in Musical Theater (60)


Call Redialed: Facetime Interview: Michael Feinstein: "Showstoppers" at Feinstein's/54 Below

Live from Feinstein's/54 Below, "Call Me Adam" brings the 11 o'clock number to this interview with Michael Feinstein, two-time Emmy & five-time Grammy nominee, about his upcoming concert Showstoppers at Feinstein's/54 Below!

It was great getting to catch-up with Michael, from learning why Michael initially wanted to purchase 54 Below to what he feels makes a song a "showstopper." We also clear the air about misconceptions & find out how Michael wants to improve his life by one percent better everyday!

Showstoppers will feature songs by iconic Broadway composers and lyricists such as Cole Porter, Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein, Stephen Sondheim, Marvin Hamlisch, and even some contemporary composers and lyricists of today as well as the backstories of each song. Joining Michael at some of his shows will be Broadway's Erich Bergen (August 12), John Lloyd Young (August 23-27), and Betty Buckley (August 29-September 3).

Showstoppers will play Feinstein's/54 Below (254 West 54th Street, between Broadway & 8th Avenue) from August 8-September 3. Click here for tickets!

For more on Michael be sure to visit and follow him on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

For more on Feinstein's/54 Below visit and follow them on FacebookTwitterYouTube, & Instagram!

Call Me Adam's 11 o'clock interview with Michael Feinstein:

Michael Feinstein's preview of his concert Showstoppers:

More on Michael:

Two-time Emmy & five-time Grammy nominee Michael Feinstein is the Ambassador of the Great American Songbook. He has built a dazzling career over the last three decades bringing the music of the Great American Songbook to the world with recordings that have earned him five Grammy Award nominations, Emmy nominated PBS-TV specials, acclaimed NPR series, and concerts spanning the globe. His work as an educator and archivist define Feinstein as one of the most important musical forces of our time.

In 2007, he founded the Great American Songbook Foundation, dedicated to celebrating the art form and preserving it through educational programs, Master Classes, and the annual High School Songbook Academy. This summer intensive open to students from across the country has produced graduates who have gone on to record acclaimed albums and appear on television programs such as NBC’s America’s Got Talent. Michael serves on the Library of Congress’ National Recording Preservation Board, an organization dedicated to ensuring the survival, conservation and increased public availability of America’s sound recording heritage.

Michael earned his fifth Grammy Award nomination in 2009 for The Sinatra Project, his CD celebrating the music of "'Ol' Blue Eyes." The Sinatra Project, Volume II: The Good Life was released in 2011. He released the CDs The Power Of Two – collaborating with Glee and 30 Rock star Cheyenne Jackson – and Cheek To Cheek, recorded with Broadway legend Barbara Cook. For Feinstein’s CD We Dreamed These Days, he co-wrote the title song with Dr. Maya Angelou.

Michael Feinstein "The Sinatra Legacy"Michael FeinsteinHis Emmy Award-nominated TV special Michael Feinstein – The Sinatra Legacy, which was taped live at the Palladium in Carmel, IN, aired across the country in 2011. The PBS series Michael Feinstein’s American Songbook, the recipient of the ASCAP Deems-Taylor Television Broadcast Award, was broadcast for three seasons and is available on DVD. His most recent primetime PBS-TV Special, New Year’s Eve at The Rainbow Room – written and directed by Desperate Housewives creator Marc Cherry – aired in 2014. For his nationally syndicated public radio program Song Travels, Michael interviews and performs alongside of music luminaries such as Bette Midler, Neil Sedaka, Liza Minnelli, Rickie Lee Jones, David Hyde Pierce and more.

Michael was named Principal Pops Conductor for the Pasadena Symphony in 2012 and made his conducting debut in June 2013 to celebrated critical acclaim. Under Michael’s leadership, the Pasadena Pops has quickly become a premier orchestral presenter of the Great American Songbook with definitive performances of rare orchestrations and classic arrangements. He launched an additional Pops series at the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts in Palm Beach, Florida in 2014.

Michael’s book The Gershwins and Me – the Los Angeles Times best-seller from Simon & Schuster – features a new CD of Gershwin standards performed with Cyrus Chestnut at the piano.

Michael serves as Artistic Director of the Palladium Center for the Performing Arts, a $170 million, three-theatre venue in Carmel, Indiana, which opened in January 2011. The theater is home to diverse live programming and a museum for his rare memorabilia and manuscripts. Since 1999, he has served as Artistic Director for Carnegie Hall’s Standard Time with Michael Feinstein in conjunction with ASCAP. In 2010 he became the director of the Jazz and Popular Song Series at New York’s Jazz at Lincoln Center.

Michael FeinsteinLiza MinnelliFeinstein’s at the Nikko, Michael’s nightclub at San Francisco’s Nikko Hotel, has presented the top talents of pop and jazz since 2013. He debuted at Feinstein’s/54 Below, his new club in New York, late in 2015. His first venue in New York, Feinstein’s at the Regency, featured major entertainers such as Rosemary Clooney, Glen Campbell, Barbara Cook, Diahann Carroll, Jane Krakowski, Lea Michele, Cyndi Lauper, Jason Mraz and Alan Cumming from 1999 to 2012.

He has designed a new piano for Steinway called The First Ladies, inspired by the White House piano and signed by several former First Ladies. It was first played to commemorate the Ronald Regan centennial on February 6, 2011.

In 2013 Michael released Change Of Heart: The Songs of Andre Previn in collaboration with four time Oscar and eleven time Grammy Award-winning composer-conductor-pianist Andre Previn. The album celebrates Previn’s pop songs and motion picture classics. Earlier album highlights include Hopeless Romantics, a songbook of classics by Michael’s late friend Harry Warren, recording with legendary jazz pianist George Shearing. His album with songwriting icon Jimmy Webb, Only One Life – The Songs of Jimmy Webb, was named one of "10 Best CDs of the Year" by USA Today.

Michael received his fourth Grammy nomination for Michael Feinstein with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, his first recording with a symphony orchestra. The year before, Rhino/Elektra Music released The Michael Feinstein Anthology, a two-disc compilation spanning 1987 to 1996 and featuring old favorites and previously-unreleased tracks.

Michael was born and raised in Columbus, Ohio, where he started playing piano by ear as a 5-year-old. After graduating from high school, he moved to Los Angeles when he was 20. The widow of legendary concert pianist-actor Oscar Levant introduced him to Ira Gershwin in July 1977. Michael became Gershwin’s assistant for six years, which earned him access to numerous unpublished Gershwin songs, many of which he has since performed and recorded.

Gershwin’s influence provided a solid base upon which Michael evolved into a captivating performer, composer and arranger of his own original music. He also has become an unparalleled interpreter of music legends such as Irving Berlin, Jerome Kern, Johnny Mercer, Duke Ellington and Harry Warren. Feinstein has received three honorary doctorates.

Through his live performances, recordings, film and television appearances, and his songwriting (in collaboration with Alan and Marilyn Bergman, Lindy Robbins, Bob Merrill and Marshall Barer), Feinstein is an all-star force in American music.


Call Redialed: Drew Brody: Curvy Widow at Westside Theatre NYC

Drew Brody, Photo Credit: Matthu PlacekThe year was 2009 when I was first introduced to singer/songwriter Drew Brody when he not only opened for singer/songwriter Jay Brannan, but Drew also co-produced Jay's album In Living Cover. I've been a fan ever since.

Over the past few years, the musical theatre world has been very lucky to have Drew's composing/writing. From Cutman: A Boxing Musical at Goodspeed Theatre to Derma at the Piccolo Spoleto, Drew's talents are finally arriving Off-Broadway with the new musical Curvy Widow, starring Tony nominee Nancy Opel. It's been a few years since Drew & I have spoken, so I thought now would be the perfect time to catch up with Drew. Much to my delight, Drew once again answered my call.

Curvy Widow is based on the true story of a sassy, witty, & feisty fifty-something widow whose adventures inspire laughter and, in the least expected places — reveal truths about life, love, and sex. From surviving hilarious first dates, to her intimate conquests, this widow navigates her way through it all with humor and perseverance. Featuring a brilliant cast of best friends, a dead husband, and a myriad of potential suitors — "Curvy" learns the hard way what it means to start life over in the modern age.

Curvy Widow plays at The Westside Theatre (407 West 43rd Street, between 9th & 10th Avenue). Click here for tickets!

For more on Drew be sure to visit and follow him on Twitter and YouTube!

Cast of "Curvy Widow" in the George Street Playhouse production, Photo Credit: T Charles Erickson1. It's so great to catch up with you Drew! You are the composer/lyricist for the new Off-Broadway musical Curvy Widow. How did you come to be involved with this show? I was introduced to Bobby Goldman through our General Manager, Aaron Lustbader. I had just finished up Cutman and was looking for new projects and collaborators. He told me he had someone he wanted to meet who was looking for a composer on an original show. I met Bobby and she had an idea for a different show, not Curvy, and I agreed to write a song to see how well we could collaborate together. In order to prove to me that she could string a sentence together, she sent me the manuscript of the memoir version of Curvy Widow. I started reading it on a plane ride, and by the time I landed, the margins were full of notes, lyric ideas, scene ideas—it was so clearly a musical to me, it was jumping off the page. I sent her an email saying "You know this is a musical, right?" The response from her had too many expletives to print—who wants their life to be a musical? But when I went to play her the song I had written for the other project, I told her I had something else to show. It was an early version of the song that’s now called "Turn the Page." By the end of the song, she was in tears, and said "Ok, we’ll write the stupid show, you jerk."

2. What was your process in writing the music/lyrics for this show? The process changed at different stages of the show. At first, I really mined the memoir for lyric ideas and song inspiration. At this point in the process, the lyrics came first, and the song styles followed. As we came to know our show more, this process reversed, because I wanted to diversify the range of song styles and tempos. For example, we had a scene where Bobby visits several gynecologists in a row to try to address an issue. When we decided to turn it into a musical number, it was very clear that of course this needs to be a tango number, and the lyrics followed. Throughout I worked very closely with Bobby to make sure I stayed in her voice, and then later in the process with our director Peter Flynn and with Nancy Opel, who plays "Bobby" in the show, to make sure the music and lyrics were consistent in tone and comfortable and consistent with the character that we were developing.

Nancy Opel as "Curvy" in the George Street Playhouse production of "Curvy Widow', Photo Credit: T Charles EricksonNancy Opel as "Curvy" in the George Street Playhouse production of "Curvy Widow', Photo Credit: T Charles Erickson3. What was the hardest song to write and what was the most fun song to write? The hardest song to write was the opening number. I wrote about seven different opening numbers for this show, and then changed it completely between Asheville and New Jersey. I had to let go of a lot of exposition over time as we came to understand exactly what information we needed to get out in order to launch our show. I really struggled with how it should sound and we also struggled about whether or not the inciting incident for our show - "Jim’s" death - should happen in the opening or right after.

The most fun song to write was the song of "Bobby’s" first date after "Jim’s" death, "A New Hand." I was laughing out loud as I wrote it—"Bobby" has no idea how to be on a date because she had been with "Jim" since she was a senior in college. Her date’s not much slicker. It’s a scene/song that plays out so well between Nancy and Alan—they’re perfectly awkward and it’s everything I imagined when I wrote it and more.

4. Which character in the show is most like you? Which character were you glad not to be? I don’t think any of these characters are like me very much, although I relate to the journey.

5. Curvy Widow tells the story of a gutsy, recently widowed 50-something woman as she immerses herself in the modern dating scene who discovers the unexpected truths about love, life and sex. What do you feel most people will relate to about this show? I’ve been surprised at how much people relate to this show, even if they have very little in common with the main character. Any one who has experienced loss that causes them to start over again—whether that’s through death, divorce, breakup—can relate to the feeling of needing to look at everything through a new lens and say "Which part of this life is me and which part was us?"

Cast of "Curvy Widow" in the George Street Playhouse production, Photo Credit: T Charles EricksonAlan Muraoka and Nancy Opel in the George Street Playhouse production of "Curvy Widow', Photo Credit: T Charles Erickson6. Since the character of "Bobby" is a gutsy woman, what is the most gutsy thing you've done so far in your life or career? The gutsiest thing I’ve done in my career was the original decision to pursue music as a career. I came to New York with a scholarship to law school and my life was heading full speed down that track, and I decided to take a major left turn. I saw very clearly what that life would have been like and had no idea what a life in music was going to be, but it was and is my passion and I felt I needed to take the risk.

7. In composing this show, what did you learn about love, life, and sex? I learned that there’s a universal struggle between wanting to be with someone and wanting independence, and everyone needs to figure out for themselves where on that spectrum they’re most comfortable. Those desires can be different at different periods of life, but the question itself—where’s my balance between independence and wanting a partner?—is always there.

8. In this show, "Bobby" learns the hard way what it means to start life over in the modern age. Has there been a time in your life thus far where you felt you had to start life over? Coincidentally, I did go through a breakup a couple years ago, and I found myself going through many of the stages that our lead character goes through in the show, from reclaiming space through piecing together a new life. It felt completely like a new beginning, in all the ways that new beginnings are terrifying but also opportunities to create a new way of being, with new habits, new patterns, new relationships, and ultimately a new sense of who I am entirely.

9. On "Call Me Adam" I have a section called One Percent Better, where through my own fitness commitment, I try to encourage people to improve their own life by one percent every day. What is something in your life that you want to improve by one percent better every day? I’m trying to be less wasteful; it would be great to reduce that by one percent every day. My main effort in this department has been to cook more and more for myself.

Drew Brody, Photo Credit: Matthu PlacekMore on Drew:

Drew Brody tunes present a rare treat for singers. "A seemingly effortless and brilliant marriage of content, character, and music." Quote from Beth Malone, star of Fun Home, in an feature, July 28, 2016

Drew Brody is a New York City-based songwriter who brings his experience in the rock, pop, and folk music world to his musical theater sensibility. His unique background allows him to work comfortably across many genres, and his songs have been sung by Broadway stars including Alan Cumming, Nancy Opel, Beth Malone, Robert Cuccioli, Sally Mayes, Lilli Cooper, Justin Sargent, Adrienne Warren, and many more.

Drew wrote the music and lyrics for Curvy Widow, a new musical based on a memoir by Bobby Goldman, starring Nancy Opel and directed by Peter Flynn, which had its first commercial production at NC Stages in November 2016 and a second run at George Street Playhouse in New Jersey in May 2017, now it's running Off-Broadway in NYC at the Westside Theatre. He’s also written music for the comedy Oh, Hello, starring Nick Kroll and John Mulaney and directed by Alex Timbers, which opened on Broadway at the Lyceum Theater in October 2016. Additional credits include: music and lyrics for Cutman: A Boxing Musical, produced by Goodspeed Theaters in the spring of 2011; music and lyrics for Derma, which ran at the Piccolo Spoleto festival in 2013; music and lyrics for Wilshire, with a book by Bobby Goldman and a stage reading directed by Rob Ashford; music and lyrics for Mudge Boy, an adaptation of the Showtime movie, in collaboration with Brett Smock; and two other new musicals currently in development. Other theater credits include the underscoring music and lyrics for the play Lightning Field, which won Outstanding Play at FringeNYC in 2005.

Drew wrote and recorded two albums with Richard Rodgers award-winning composer Derek Gregor as the rock band M-LAB, with which Drew performed as lead singer and toured during the 2000s. Drew also released two solo albums on Baskethouse Records and co-produced two albums for songwriter Jay Brannan. Recently, Drew composed the score for the acclaimed film, Stephen Winter’s Jason and Shirley, which premiered at the MoMA and has been touring movie festivals, and released an EP, A Little Single, in collaboration with fellow singer-songwriter Lance Horne.


Call Answered: Melissa Anelli: BroadwayCon

Melissa AnelliIn 2016, I attended the very first BroadwayCon. What an exciting weekend (despite the huge blizzard that was covering NYC) this was. For years I have watched friends go to ComicCon and thought it would be great to have something like this for Broadway and then poof, there was. I am so honored to have had the chance to interview BroadwayCon's co-creator Melissa Anelli.

If you are a fan of the theatre, BroadwayCon is the place to be! From workshops with Broadway actors to panel discussions (like the one I attended last year called "Ghosts of the Palace Theatre," moderated by Untold Stories of Broadway author Jennifer Ashley Tepper, which told some behind-the-scenes hauntings of Broadway theatres) to merchandise to autograph sessions, BroadwayCon has it all!

This year's convention will take place at the Jacob K. Javitis Center in NYC (655 West 34th Street) from January 27-29! BroadwayCon will feature a host of Broadway's brightest including Whoopi Goldberg, Chita Rivera, Anthony Rapp, Josh Groban, Joel Grey, Michael Cerveris, Darren Criss, Jeremy Jordan, Kelli O'Hara, and so many more! Click here for tickets!

For more on BroadwayCon be sure to visit and follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

Anthony Rapp1. How did you decide to develop BroadwayCon? Our company, Mischief Management has run several conventions, which we started because we were a bunch of Harry Potter fans. We did our first Harry Potter convention LeakyCon, in Boston in 2009, which we thought was going to be a one-off thing. We didn’t know that something big was starting. But, we ended up doing another LeakyCon and realized we had something. That lead to the creation of Mischief Management.

Our conventions focus on fans, content, and immersion. The typical convention model is not very fan friendly. Most conventions just look for a way to get a lot of people in the door to pay for autographs, which is not what we do. We want to make sure the fans have a true choose-your-own-adventure, whirlwind experience where they can find their own way to have their own best time while getting a lot of value out of the weekend.

In 2013, my then business partner said to me, "Hey, has there ever been a Broadway convention?" She happened to ask me this on the night Audra McDonald dropped the mic on the Tony Awards, it was literally at that moment. I happen to be at Anthony Rapp’s house that night. I’m friends with Anthony because I was a major Rent fan back in the day. I was one of those people sleeping outside the theatre waiting for tickets. Anthony & I became stage door friends then kept in touch over time and we have maintained this friendship. After Anthony attended one of my events, we cornered him and said, "Now that you see what we do, how we are different from other conventions, what do you think about us doing what we do for Broadway?" He was like "Whhhatever you need, I’m in." He saw that we were not trying to make the convention transaction based (not trying to get the most money out of an attendees), but having one fee cover the entire cost of the weekend so you can go and enjoy. We only want you taking out money if you are buying food or merchandise.

The convention industry is so full in the TV/Film area, it is really sometimes a challenge with our other conventions for big time talent to come. But with BroadwayCon, the Broadway community understands why actual interaction is more valuable than a quick signature, so the support has been incredible from them.

BroadwayCon 2016BroadwayCon Autograph table 20162. The great thing about BroadwayCon is that you have different kinds of panels and workshops, so attendees can really learn from Broadway-working actors, whether they are a Tony Award winner, Tony nominee, or just starting out. It’s such a unique experience for fans. The list of guests is incredible and so varied. A few scheduled to be in attendance are Whoopi Goldberg, Chita Rivera and Josh Groban. How do you decide whom to reach out to? It’s a wide variety of things. We look at the kind of programming we want as well as the shows coming to Broadway this year. We brainstorm with our programming team which is a host of volunteers, headed up by Sierra Fox, whom along with our director David Alpert, work together, to determine what the Broadway community may want to see by looking at what anniversaries are coming up and what the big moments of the past year were. We also contact the current shows to say there’s space on our stage if you want to promote your show on our site. We focus on putting together the "BroadwayCon First Look," which is a preview of the upcoming season. Additionally, we receive a lot of requests and inquiries which we look at and see how we can add them in.

3. Last year was the inaugural BroadwayCon. How long did it take you from creation to inception to put it all together? It was 2½ years from inception to BroadwayCon's debut. Now, it’s a yearly event.

4. How do you want BroadwayCon to grow in the coming years? Now that we have the tail of the tiger, how do we grow it? What capacity does it grow? Those are the big questions for us. The Javitis is undergoing a lot of construction, so we may not be at the Javitis next year, but location is secondary to making sure we keep the ideals of the convention, celebration of Broadway & celebration of the community, in tact.

BroadwayCon 2016 Sing-a-LongBroadwayCon 2016 Workshop5. What are some of the challenges to putting BroadwayCon together and what are some of the rewards you get from doing it? The sheer number of moving pieces. You are talking about 400 special guests which means they all have itineraries, a track that they are traveling throughout the weekend, transportation requirements, and people coming with them. It takes a ton of people to manage them and we are a seven person company that all work in one small office, so we rely heavily on our tremendous volunteers, who spend a lot of time helping us. That’s the biggest challenge. We also face some challenges communicating to the Broadway community just who we are and what we are. Even though we are in our second year, it’s still not 100% known.

The rewarding thing is when I see people who look like they are at home in their own skin when that is potentially not always the case. At any convention we do, when I see people especially the young ones, smiling and making friends during this three-day wonderland, it’s really something else.

6. One thing I noticed at BroadwayCon last year was a lot of fans come dressed up as their favorite characters from a show. What were some of your favorite costumes and which ones surprised you? I loved the Side Show sisters, the "King Georges," "Ozians," and Cats. I loved the "Heathers," the "Rentheads," and the Hairspray characters. At one point there was a "Tracy Turnblad" and a "Penny" who did not come together, they just happen to be dressed up as those two characters and found each other during the convention and just became friends. I thought that was great. It’s very exciting because theatre cosplay is not something you get to see very often and BroadwayCon is really the first place where you can really showcase it.

BroadwayCon 2016 "Season Sneak Peak"Lin-Manuel Miranda at BroadwayCon 20167. Who haven’t you gotten for BroadwayCon yet that you would like to? Stephen Sondheim, Andrew Lloyed Webber, Rosie O’Donnell, and Bernadette Peters.

8. If you could star in any current Broadway show, which one would you want to be in and out of all the Broadway shows produced, which one would you have liked to be part of? Pretending that I have the acting and singing talent, currently, I’d love to play "Evan Hansen" in Dear Evan Hansen. I’ve been that person who felt alone and found community almost by accident. I think a lot of what we do in this industry touches many people.

If I could be in any show in history, I would be "Glinda" from Wicked because who doesn’t want to get in a giant bubble, wear a tiara, giant ball gown and fly all over the stage singing those songs.

Melissa AnelliMore on Melissa:

Melissa Anelli is the CEO of Mischief Management and co-founder of BroadwayCon. She has been creating conventions since 2007 for fans around the world; she is also the owner of The Leaky Cauldron web page and author of the New York Times bestselling Harry, A History: The true story of a boy wizard, his fans, and life inside the Harry Potter phenomenon, which features a foreword from J.K. Rowling. Melissa served as a creative consultant for the launch of Pottermore and founded GeekyNews. She's a devourer of books, aficionado of theatre, and devotee to the art of creating safe spaces for geeks to fully enjoy the things they love.


Call Answered: Freestyle Facetime Interview: The Q Brothers - Othello: The Remix

From the Westside Theatre in NYC, "Call Me Adam" freestyles with The Q Brothers (JQ & GQ), the creators, composers, & stars of the fun & entertaining new Off-Broadway musical Othello: The Remix, (a fresh 80-minute take on the Shakespeare classic).

Their freestyle talents are really shown off in this interview, as I asked them to freestyle their answers instead of speak them. Othello: The Remix plays the Westside Theatre in NYC (407 West 43rd Street, between 9th & 10th Avenue). Click here for tickets!

Call Me Adam's freestyle interview with The Q Brothers:


Call Redialed: Klea Blackhurst: Real Actors of NYC

Klea BlackhurstKlea Blackhurst's voice has been radiating in my ears for years! I was thrilled to get to first interview Klea last year (2015) when she starred in the concert version of Stephen Cole and David Evans' show Merman's Apprentice at Birdland. 

Now, it's a joy to catch up with Klea as she gets ready to star in the new, original musical The Real Actors of NYC, about an infuriated trio of musical theatre actors determined to make it on Broadway by any means necessary. In The Real Actors of NYC, "Mumz" has a 30 year old grudge that it’s time to settle. When a "Young Marge" casts her friend instead of the amazingly talented "Young Mumzy Taylor," it sets in motion a lifetime of disappointment and shattered dreams for "Mumz." She loses her mind and creates her own reality. Now she has the chance to get back at the one person who screwed her over and ruined her life. Watch out: it’s going to be a bumpy ride and digits (fingers) will be lost in the process!

The Real Actors of NYC plays at the Anne L. Bernstein Theater at The Theater Center in NYC (50th & Broadway) Thursdays at 8pm and Saturdays at 4:45pm and 10:30pm. Click here for tickets!

For more on Klea follow her on Facebook and Twitter!

For more on the The Real Actors of NYC visit and follow them on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube!

1. This September you are starring in the open run of the new original Off-Broadway musical The Real Actors of NYC. What initially attracted you to this show? THE INVITATION TO JOIN…Since then it’s been a non-stop love fest. I listened to "Mumz" number, "Goodnight, My Pretties," and it really captured a love of theatre that I understand at a very deep and slightly delusional level. Sometimes you land a job and wonder "how could it possibly have taken this long to find this group of friends."

2. What do you relate to most about your character "Mumz"? The feeling of nostalgia for a world that never was…New York 30 years ago. Was I ever really that young? Why did I ever let my feelings get hurt and stay hurt?

3. What is one trait of "Mumz" you wish you had in your own life? Total fearlessness as the sum total of time and trouble.

4. The Real Actors of NYC is about an infuriated trio of musical theatre actors determined make it on Broadway by any means. With that premise in mind, what is the craziest or most conniving thing you've done to get an audition or role that you've really wanted? Sadly, I’ve never been conniving enough. I only THINK about going all out, but lack the courage to follow through. Once upon a time, I thought about climbing to the top of the Brooklyn Bridge with a banner that said I wanted to play "Mama Morton" on Broadway or I was gonna jump. I thought the Weisslers might actually admire that and give me a shot.

Klea Blackhurst and Lorinda Lisitza in "Real Actors of NYC"5. Your character, "Mumz," holds a 30-year grudge against the casting director who did not cast her when she was starting out. If you are holding a grudge against someone, now is your chance to clear the air. What would you say to this person if they were standing in front of you? Would you forgive them or if you were at fault, would you apologize to them? One of the people who did the most emotional damage in my mind was actually standing in front of me a few weeks ago, an agent I’d met with a lifetime ago. Rather than go into the grudge, something about being told I was too fat to be working in show business circa 1988. I decided it was a therapy issue and took it to a professional!! The real truth is I did the damage to myself by letting his words hurt me. If I approached him now, he probably wouldn’t even remember the remark and of course I look back at my resume photo and see I was an adorable young lady just walking out into the world for the first time. I wish I’d laughed in his face and left the meeting. Instead I believed him.

Klea Blackhurst6. What is one role that you were not cast in that you really wanted and to this day feel you deserved? I can’t even go there. There is one situation unfolding right now that makes me want to burst into tears.

7. As a result of not being cast at a young age, "Mumz" has suffered a lifetime of disappointment and shattered dreams. What is one shattered dream that you have endured? How have you recovered from it or what steps are you still taking to recover? Oh, I’ve had so my disappointments and shattered dreams. One biggie is the failure to bring The Nutty Professor into New York. We had a premiere in Nashville in 2012. It ended up being Marvin Hamlisch’s final score. He and Rupert Holmes had just started collaborating and they were magical together. I was hand picked as a "21st Century Kathleen Freeman" in the words of Jerry Lewis, who was adapting and directing. So that felt like something special. "Kathleen Freeman" was a truly brilliant character actress and thought it was a sign that my character years had arrived. I thought the tables might be turning and I’d finally get a Broadway show and be part of the popular kids club.

Klea Blackhurst, Photo Credit: Kevin Alvey8. This event also caused "Mumz" to lose her mind and create her own reality. When has there been a time in your life when you had to come up with your own reality? What reality did you design for yourself? My whole world is my creation. It’s the only way to survive a life in the arts. It’s all going to be alright in my world. I say yes to just about every opportunity in my world, because it takes me to the right place.

9. If Klea today, gave advice to "Mumz" at any stage of her life, what stage would you advise her on and what would you tell her? I would go to the young "Mumzy," hitting NYC for the very first time, still young enough to see it all as possibility and magical. I’d take her by the shoulders, make eye contact and BEG her to take none of what’s about to happen personally.

10. In our interview last year, you mentioned that you would like to improve your exercise consistency by 1% better everyday. How has that improvement been going? If well, what have you done? If you haven't been consistent, what has been preventing you from getting there? I think I’m doing 365% better! I’ve become mindful by wearing a tracker on my wrist and meeting my goals there. I also go to Weight Watchers. My steps are up and my weight is down. I love it.

Klea BlackhurstMore on Klea:

Klea Blackhurst just completed the title role in the world premiere of Hazel at Drury Lane in Chicago. Klea starred in Goodspeed Opera’s 50th anniversary production of Hello, Dolly! and the world premiere of the Marvin Hamlisch/Rupert Holmes musical, The Nutty Professor, directed by Jerry Lewis. Theatre: NY- A Tree Grows in BrooklynBingoBy JupiterRadio GalsOil City Symphony; Regional credits include Annie Get Your Gun/Glimmerglass Opera, Call Me Madam/42nd Street Moon,Chicago/Pioneer Theatre Company in her hometown of Salt Lake City and several productions of Anything Goes. TV/radio: Former prosecutor, "Shelby Cross" on Onion News Network, The Knick, Sesame Street, and Prairie Home Companion. Known for her Ethel Merman tribute, Everything The Traffic Will Allow, her other shows are Autumn in New York: Vernon Duke’s Broadway and Dreaming of a Song: The Music of Hoagy Carmichael, in collaboration with Billy Stritch. With Jim Caruso, their annual Christmas show at Birdland is in its seventh year. She’s appeared in legendary halls from The London Palladium to Carnegie Hall, The Royal Albert Hall to Jazz at Lincoln Center and with symphony orchestras from Atlanta to Philly. Klea is a charter member of the Jerry Herman Legacy Concerts and a distinguished Alumna of the University of Utah.