Twitter
Facebook

 

 

Subscribe Here

To get all your Broadway news,click the picture above

"Call Me Adam" chats with...

Entries in New York City (44)

Monday
Apr142014

Call Answered: Committed Conference Call with Tricia Brouk, Andrew David Sotomayor, Mike Longo

Cast and Creative Team of "Committed", Photo Credit: Theresa Balderas"Call Me Adam" chats with the creatives, Tricia Brouk (Writer/Director/Choreographer) and Andrew David Sotomayor (Lyricist/Composer/Musical Supervisor), and cast member Mike Longo about the new Off-Broadway musical Committed, a dark and beautiful book musical about eight people working through the pain of their mental illnesses in a psychiatric institute. Committed hopes to use art and entertainment to de-stigmatize mental illness and get people talking about it.

Committed plays from April 17-20 at the West End Theatre at Church of St. Paul and St. Andrew (263 West 86th Street between Broadway & West End Avenue). Click here for tickets!

For more on Committed be sure to visit http://www.committedthemusical.com and follow the show on Facebook and Twitter!

Writer/Director/Choreographer Tricia Brouk in rehearsal for "Committed", Photo Credit: Theresa Balderas1. For Andrew and Tricia: How did you two first come to work together and then what made you want to write Committed?

Tricia: Andrew and I had already been working together for about four years on various shows I directed. He was music directing and arranging for me. In 2013, I asked him if he wanted to arrange a new show I wrote, and he asked how I felt about him writing an original score. That was the catalyst for it all. We wrote our first musical, 50 Shades of F****D Up. Our first project together was optioned theatrically, and recently has been optioned as a feature film. It was such a positive and inspiring experience working with Andrew, I asked him if he wanted to write the music and lyrics for the next musical I had in mind about "crazy people." Andrew is extremely prolific and works as fast as I do. We are incredibly well suited for each other. For me, it's the perfect creative marriage. Writing Committed came out of wanting to create another project to work on. It was another way for me to work with Andrew and to create more work. What I wasn't prepared for was that Committed would take on a life of its own and become much bigger than me. I started writing it as a comedy. Once I realized just how many people suffer from mental illness, and that no one is talking about it, I knew that I needed to treat this subject matter with much more sensitivity. I knew that I had an opportunity to create art around a painful topic that could potentially change people's lives and open up the dialogue of mental illness. Bringing awareness to mental illness, while entertaining and inspiring, is in the end, why I wrote Committed.

Lyricist/Composer/Musical Supervisor Andrew David Sotomayor in rehearsal for "Committed", Photo Credit: Theresa BalderasAndrew: I had been working as a network administrator for a high school and moonlighting as a music director by night. Someone that was general managing one of Tricia's shows hired me as an audition accompanist for her. I had a day job but I called in sick to take the gig because I knew that if I wanted to create theater I was going to have to start making some little sacrifices. Taking a day off in the summer to play some auditions seemed like a good start. Shortly thereafter she brought me on board to music direct and from there we spent 4 years collaborating with me arranging and music directing shows she was directing. In December of 2013 she asked me if I would do some arrangements for a script she wrote and I countered with asking if she was open to me pitching an original score to her. By January we had completed our first original book musical 50 Shades of F****d Up. After several successful performances and being optioned theatrically (and as a feature film) we began to discuss what else we might be able to create together. Eventually she came to me with an idea about a show dealing with "crazy people" and I, of course, jumped on board. Right before we worked on 50 Shades, I had written a song cycle involving characters dealing with mental illness. I hadn't done anything with the piece and put it on the shelf to focus on 50 Shades. When she asked me to write the music and lyrics to a new piece she was creating involving the same subject matter, I took it as a sign. Somehow, the subject matter had found it's way back to me through someone I had a wonderfully synergistic collaborative relationship with. It was too perfect.

Mike Longo and cast in rehearsal for "Committed", Photo Credit: Theresa Balderas1. For Mike: What attracted you Committed?

Mike: I had worked with the writers Tricia and Andrew on 50 Shades of F****d Up! and I had a blast. They move FAST, go above and beyond, and can have fun all while doing it. What attracted me to the Committed material was my character, "Antonio" who is in treatment for Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID) or more commonly known as Multiple Personalities Disorder. It feels wrong saying it but it's an actor's dream role. The thought of getting to dive into the emotions of 3 different personalities all in one character is daunting but so juicy. So many possibilities and I get to originate it. What's special about the direction Tricia and I are taking with "Antonio" is that he is very real as opposed to how comically people with DID have been portrayed in the media all these years. It's about relating to "Antonio," not laughing at his disorder. That's important to me.

Mike Longo and cast doing outreach at the Greenhope Services for Women2. What do you hope audiences come away with after seeing Committed? 

Tricia: I hope that audiences feel inspired, and moved and not alone. It's my hope that each audience member can relate to one of the characters and feel a sense of belonging and love, without judgement. I also hope they can have a few laughs at the same time.

Andrew: My hope is that audiences view the piece as both moving and entertaining as well as come to a greater understanding of how vital a sense of compassion, patience, and community is to our existence.

Mike: The feeling that you are not alone!! Sotomayor's finale "Not Alone" really sums it up....Come see it.

Mike Longo and cast rehearsing for "Committed", Photo Credit: Theresa Balderas3. What has been the best part watching this cast bring Committed to life?

Tricia: In our first table read, the cast shared with me their concerns about actually feeling like they had some of the traits of some of their character. When we dig deep and look at ourselves, I think we can all relate to the pain and complexities of all human beings. Seeing each cast member take on their role fully and with abandon, while at the same time, paying the deepest respect to the truth in it, has been very beautiful and inspiring to me. Each actor is approaching their character with sincerity and passion. And there have been a lot of tears, which moves me to pieces. I'm in awe everyday.

Andrew: These characters and their illnesses could so easily have become caricatures. Tricia established early on that we are treating these characters and what they are going through with the utmost respect and sincerity. Because that was established from the start I have seen these actors develop these characters in such an honest and moving way. I'm constantly overwhelmed by how much they're willing to give to these characters and this world.

Mike: The personal stories. From it's table reads to yesterday's rehearsal, we learn something about each other whether it is from sharing a very personal experience relating to the piece or seeing a fellow cast member struggle to say a line because he/she is struggling with their own personal pain related to it. It's just beautiful and comforting. I'm not alone!

Tricia Brouk doing outreach at the Greenhope Services for Women4. How do you feel Committed will help bring awareness to mental illness?

Tricia: I've written eight characters with eight different mental illnesses. Each character is relatable, flawed, and strong. It's my hope that by spending 90 minutes at the theater watching Committed, will get people talking about mental illness who have never felt safe talking about it. When I tell people what our show is about, they immediately share personal stories about themselves or people they are close to who suffer from mental illness. It's been my experience, that people are afraid to talk about it. Well, why not sing and dance about it and get that dialogue going?

Andrew: I think anyone that watches the show will be able to personally identify with one of the main characters or recognize traits they share with more than one character, or see someone they know in one of the characters. There is a stigma attached to mental illness that sometimes gives us permission to forget that there is a human dealing with it, coping with it, or suffering through it. All of our characters have a different mental illness, but all of them are innately human and beautiful. I think the music and dance helps to augment the humanity behind the illnesses and hopefully it will give us permission to celebrate the humanity and be more open to candidly discussing the illness.

Mike: This show has such power to bring out awareness because it resembles realism. Again, we are not laughing at these characters.

Andrew Sotomayor in "Committed" rehearsal, Photo Credit: Theresa Balderas5. If you feel comfortable, do you have a personal story you'd like to share about your experience with mental illness? (whether it be your own story, a friend's story, or a family member's story).

Tricia: My family is crazy, but not in the clinical form. I do however, believe that there is a little of me in each of these characters. Pain is pain, we all have it, we all know it. Whether it's depression or mental illness, it's touched us all. Knowing we are not alone, is what keeps us all going.

Andrew: In college a dear friend of mine took his own life. He had been suffering from severe depression for many years. It pains me to think of how alone he must have felt despite being such a light to all of us that knew him. It's so important that we acknowledge those that personally suffer and those that love someone who is suffering, and constantly remind each other that we are not alone.

Mike: I've had an encounter with a close friend that myself and many of his peers believed had sociopathic tendencies. And the sad part about it is none of us were ever sure it would be diagnosed. None of us said anything and I separated myself from him because I was so unsure and didn't feel safe. Later in life, I met someone who's own father was diagnosed sociopathic and saw how much abuse she went through growing up and how it hurt her but it was only until adulthood that his condition was treated. I kept thinking if only this wasn't something this man's family thought he would "grow out of," lives could be saved.

Tricia BroukMore on Tricia:

Tricia Brouk recently wrote, directed and choreographed 50 SHADES OF F****D UP, A MUSICAL PARODY, for the stage and has now adapted it for the screen, which will be made into a feature film. Tricia is choreographing BLACK BOX for ABC, starring Kelly Reilly, directed by Simon Curtis. She is also choreographing THE ZOMBIES: A MUSICAL, directed by Max Resto. Her work has been recently seen at Joe's Pub, BC Beat and Stage 72 in New York City. She directed/choreographed BROADWAY VARIETEASE, I LOVE YOU, YOU'RE PERFECT, NOW CHANGE!, BINGO, THE WINNING MUSICAL and POPESICAL, which played the Lyric Theater in LA.

She directed/choreographed EROTIC BROADWAY: VINTAGE VARIETY, FRANKIE AND DEBBIE LIVE AT THE MARTINI LOUNGE, and the Off Broadway TOKIO CONFIDENTIAL at Atlantic Stage 2. Tricia also choreographed John Turturro's feature film ROMANCE AND CIGARETTES where she received a Golden Thumb award from Roger Ebert for her choreography in the film. She also wrote, directed, choreographed and dances in ROLLING IN THE RING OF FIRE, a short film. Her choreography can also be seen in Dennis Leary's RESCUE ME starring Steve Pasquale and in Lasse Hallstrom's THE HOAX, starring Richard Gere. Her choreography is also featured in Capitol One Commercials and on the Travel Channel. She choreographed and produced a one woman show called Dining Alone at Dance Theater Workshop and created work for The A Train Musicals and THE FRED ASTAIRE AWARDS as well as New York Musical Theater Festival shows DRIFT and LOVE SUCKS, directed by Andy Goldberg. www.TriciaBrouk.com

Andrew SotomayorMore on Andrew:

Previous credits include music directing CUTMAN: A BOXING MUSICAL, LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS, EROTIC BROADWAY: VINTAGE VARIETY, Counting Squares' WOYZECK, FRANKIE AND DEBBIE: LIVE AT THE MARTINI LOUNGE, I LOVE YOU, YOU'RE PERFECT, NOW CHANGE, BINGO: THE WINNING MUSICAL, THE DROWSY CHAPERONE, the Honeck and Moss productions of SOCIAL INTERCOURSE, FROM BOOK TO BROADWAY, SING ME A STORY, and the 2012 and 2013 DUPLEX GALA. As a composer he has provided music and lyrics for 50 SHADES OF F****D UP as well as scores for BENT, and the short films CUBA 1961: A LOVE STORY and TIMELESS. His original song "MOVIN' ON" earned a nomination for a 2013 MAC Award. He is also the recipient of a 2014 MAC award for his original song "THE RIGHT TIME."

Mike LongoMore on Mike:

Mike Longo has gladly committed himself to the Brouk/Sotomayor team after first submitting to their last piece, 50 SHADES OF F****D UP! (Red House Theatre, Syracuse). Other credits: White Plains Performing Art's Center's LES MISERABLES (Marius), world premiere of TAMAR OF THE RIVER at Prospect Theater (Onan, dir. Daniel Goldstein), MOTHER DIVINE (NYMF'13) and the international tour of HAIR (dir. Diane Paulus). www.mikelongo.info

Wednesday
Apr022014

Call Answered: Facetime Interview with the cast of Mama and Her Boys

"Call Me Adam" went on location to Sophie's in NYC to chat with 2 out of 3 cast members of the hit Off-Broadway musical Mama and Her Boys, Sarah Kleeman and Steven Baker. Featuring an eclectic mix of music from virtually all genres, this funny and poignant musical explores the dynamic relationship with mothers, sons and families.

Mama and Her Boys plays every Wednesday at 8:30pm at Sophie's in NYC through May 7, 2014 (318 West 53rd, between 8th & 9th Avenue, inside the Broadway Comedy Club). Click here for tickets and be sure to follow the show on Facebook and Twitter!

Interview with Sarah Kleeman and Steven Baker from Mama and Her Boys at Sophie's:

Saturday
Mar292014

Call Answered: Raul Castillo Interview: HBO's Looking and Jose Rivera's Adoration of the Old Woman

Raul CastilloFrom HBO's Looking, "Call Me Adam" chats with actor and writer Raul Castillo about starring on the hit HBO show as "Richie," working with Jonathan Groff, and his current run in Jose Rivera's Adoration of the Old Woman at INTAR Theatre in New York City. According to press notes, Adoration of the Old Woman tells the story of an ancient woman. A haunted bed. An angry teen. A sexy ghost. Political turmoil. Will Puerto Rico really become the 51st state or will it fight for its freedom? And all the coquis are dying. Adoration of the Old Woman has been extended through April 19! Click here for tickets!

1. Who or what inspired you to become an actor? No one thing. There have been so many influential people in my life and experiences I've had coupled with my own innate sense of wonder and curiosity, I think, and a need for artistic expression. Maybe it's being a middle child. Maybe it was my upbringing in the South Texas punk rock scene. Maybe it was John Farr, my high school Drama teacher, a complicated and thrilling teacher. Maybe it was the playwright Tanya Saracho, my teenage girlfriend and now one of my best friends who coincidentally is a staff writer on Looking. Maybe it was Carlito's Way. Maybe it's Tennessee Williams. Maybe it was Miguel Piñero, Anthony Quinn, James Dean, Matt Dillon, John Leguizamo, every rock singer and bass player I imitated in my room in front of my mirror religiously throughout my teenage years, perfecting and crafting performances. I could go on forever.

2. Who haven't you worked with that you would like to? That list could also go on forever. There are so many filmmakers and theater artists out there doing their thing, whose work I love. I wouldn't know where to start and then I would know how to end.

3. What attracted you to Adoration of the Old Woman? A couple of things. First, it gave me another opportunity to work with Jose Rivera. This is our fourth collaboration. I love his characters and the worlds he concocts, they are always a thrill for any actor to interpret and inhabit. The dialogue the play initiates regarding Puerto Rican statehood and U.S. involvement in the Island and it's affairs, I felt was an important one. And Jose finds a beautiful way to express this very complicated issue, through humor and passion. It's an exciting play to perform. In addition, it is a pleasure to be back at Intar, a company dedicated to producing new Latino voices. I got my start with the company, my first acting job in New York City, back in 2003. I love what Lou Moreno, their Artistic Director, is doing there! He asked me to come in and read for our director Patricia McGregor. "Ismael," my character, seemed like the right fit. He's very different from "Richie," my character on Looking.  But like "Richie," he's a lot of fun to play.

Raul Castillo as "Ismael" in Jose Rivera's "Adoration of the Old Woman," Photo Credit: Carol Rosegg4. What do you identify most with about your character "Ismael"? His love for this old, crazy woman, the character of "Doña Belen," played by the amazing Socorro Santiago. Also, his pride and his sense of loyalty. He feels strongly about his beliefs and backs them up, elegantly and forcefully, when pushed into a corner.

5. What has been the best part about doing a show with INTAR? Getting back on stage. INTAR has great, enthusiastic audiences. Lou has done a great job of fostering a community that's growing all the time. It's a great place to be. There's a lot of young people doing lots of cool stuff there. And it's all very much tied to a past and a legacy of giving voice to important Latino stories. A lot of Latino theater artists have been directly influenced by work that has come out of INTAR, I certainly was. It's great to be back!

6. What excites you about working with this cast? The range of experiences, both work and life, that they all bring. There's a lot of love in the room and everyone's working really hard and dedicated to telling this story. And they're all bringing it to the stage. I learn a lot from them, I feel lucky to go to the theater every night.

Raul Castillo as "Richie" in HBO's "Looking"7. In addition to Adoration of the Old Woman, you just finished the first season of HBO's Looking. What made you want to audition for the role of "Richie" and how did you prepare for the role once you were cast? I worked on the short film Lorimer with Michael Lannan, which he made essentially as a prototype for Looking. He reached out to me through a mutual friend and sent me the script. I read it and thought it was very elegantly written, the characters seemed very real and natural, and so I said "yes" and worked on "Richie" then. I still had to audition for the pilot once HBO picked it up. But I loved the pilot script and once I saw Andrew Haigh's movie Weekend I was even more thrilled. His characters seem to just walk in from the street. I didn't feel like I had to do much to prepare, necessarily. Just stay true to the story and the moment. Figure out "Richie's" life and his history and what I feel motivates him, etc.

Jonathan Groff ("Patrick") and Raul Castillo ("Richie") in a scene from HBO's "Looking"8. What do you like about working with Jonathan Groff? He's an ideal scene partner. Hard working, true, real, honest and very present. I feel like he's the kind of actor who knows if I've missed a moment but doesn't judge me for it. He always brings his best, makes me want to do the same. I think if you asked any person on our cast or crew, they'd tell you the same. He's a great friend and a guy I care a lot about. It's fantastic bringing this story to life with him. Also, he's very funny and fun to be around. That doesn't hurt.

9. What do you get from your theatrical endeavors that you do not get from your film/television work? Telling a story moment to moment. You can't go back and shoot it again. The was the moment. That's how it will live in the minds of this night's audience. Throwing control out the window and really living and breathing in the moment. It's frightening every time, but I love it.

Raul Castillo and Socorro Santiago in Jose Rivera's "Adoration of the Old Woman", Photo Credit: Carol Rosegg10. What's the best advice you've ever received? My dad's always said this Martin Luther King quote. He tells his own version of it, in Spanish. But it stuck with me from when I was a kid. Whatever you do, whether it's mop floors or run a bank, you do the best you can.

11. How do you feel you've grown as a person from being an actor? Hard to say but I'm sure it has exposed me to experiences and culture that have formed a great part of who I am. Hopefully it's made me more empathetic. That's what we strive for, I think, or should be. I hope I continue to grow and get to experience more and more. I love storytelling, it teaches us so much about life.

BONUS QUESTIONS:

12. If you could have any super power, which one would you choose? Invisibility.

13. Favorite way to stay in shape? Eating healthy, unprocessed and nutricious foods.

14. Boxers or Briefs? Boxer briefs.

Raul CastilloMore on Raul:

Raul Castillo can currently be seen in the HBO series Looking in the role of "Richie." He is a proud member of LAByrinth Theater Company. Theater credits include Fish Men (Goodman), A Lifetime Burning (Primary Stages), Contigo (Signature), and Jose Rivera's School of the Americas (Public Theater/Labyrinth), Flowers (E.S.T.) and Reference's to Salvador Dalí Make Me Hot (Abroad).

Born and raised on the Texas-Mexico border and based in New York City, Raul studied theater at Boston University's School for the Arts before making a name for himself on both stage and screen as an actor and writer. He made his feature film debut in Amexicano, which premiered at Tribeca Film Festival in 2007. Variety's Ronnie Scheib referred to his performance as "pitch-perfect." Raul followed that up with a string of roles in independent films, including Cold Weather, Don't Let Me Drown, My Best Day, The Girl, and Bless Me, Ultima, in addition to garnering an honorable mention for performance at AFI Fest 2012 for the Student Academy Award-winning short film Narcocorrido. Television credits include Blue Bloods, Law and Order, and Nurse Jackie.

Sunday
Mar162014

Call Answered: Facetime Interview at The Metropolitan Room with Sarah Rebell and Samantha Massell

"Call Me Adam" sat down with lyricist Sarah Rebell and actress/singer Samantha Massell at The Metropolian Room in New York City to talk about Sarah's show Past Is Present: The Lyrics of Sarah Rebell which takes place on March 24 at 9:30pm at The Metropolitan Room! Click here for tickets!

For more on Sarah be sure to visit http://www.sarahrebell.com and follow her on Twitter!

For more on Samantha Massell be sure to visit http://samanthamassell.com and follow her on Twitter!

Interview with Sarah Rebell and Samantha Massell:

Sarah RebellMore on Sarah:

Sarah Rebell recieved her MFA in musical theater writing (book/lyrics) from NYU Tisch. Her work has been performed in cabarets at 54 Below, the Berkshire Musical Theater Writers Lab, the Duplex, the Laurie Beechman Theater, NYU and the Sharon Playhouse. Her songs have been recorded by Broadway stars Melissa Errico, Alexander Gemignani, Rebecca Luker and Laura Osnes, among others. Her musical ROSE PETALS (written with Elizabeth Hagstedt) was an official selection of NYMF 2013’s developmental reading series.

In April 2013, OFF THE WALL, an original musical with book & lyrics by Sarah Rebell and music by Danny Abosch, was presented at NYU. The cast featured Alexander Gemignani, Jaclyn Huberman, Craig Laurie, Patricia Noonan and Jason "SweetTooth" Williams. Other NYU musicals include TYRANNY’S BED, a one-act chamber musical written with John Grimmett, which was presented in May 2012, also starring Alexander Gemignani.

She has been a publicity consultant for cabarets featuring Emily Bergl, Anastasia Barzee and Katie Thompson and has produced master classes with Kait Kerrigan, Georgia Stitt, Pasek & Paul and Susan Blackwell.

Sarah graduated from Vassar College in 2011 with a BA in Drama & Victorian Studies. While at Vassar, she wrote the book & lyrics to ROSE PETALS, an original Victorian musical, as her senior thesis. Sarah currently works in the marketing department at SpotCo, one of Broadway’s premier advertising agencies. 

Samantha MassellMore on Samantha:

Samantha Massell is an actress, singer, dancer, and writer based in New York City who has appeared on Broadway, in films, and in a variety of commercials. A native New Yorker who had a childhood obsession with the Annie movie, Samantha was eight years old when she asked her mother for an agent. It was pretty much all over from there. Samantha is a recent Phi Beta Kappa graduate of The University of Michigan, where she double majored in Musical Theatre and English.

Friday
Mar142014

Call Answered: The New York Pops On Broadway with Steven Reineke, Andrew Rannells, and Stephanie J. Block

"Call Me Adam" went behind-the-scenes at The New York Pops On Broadway press event to speak with The New York Pops Musical Director and Conductor, Steven Reineke as well as their special guest stars Broadway Tony Award nominees Stephanie J. Block and Andrew Rannells.

The New York Pops On Broadway will take place on March 21 at 7:30pm at Carnegie Hall (57th Street & 7th Avenue) in New York City! Click here for tickets!

For more on The New York Pops be sure to visit www.newyorkpops.org and follow them on Facebook and Twitter!

Call Me Adam and Steven ReinekeSteven Reineke:

1. The New York Pops, On Broadway, will be presented on Friday, March 21 at 7:30pm. What excites you about this upcoming concert? A lot excites me about this concert. One, it's our first concert back at Carnegie Hall since December, so it's always fun to get back to it. I am also getting to perform with two of my great friends Stephanie J. Block and Andrew Rannells. We are doing all this great Broadway repertoire. We got to pick it ourselves, so it's like making our own party playlist of what we would want to sing in my living room, except we are bringing it to life at Carnegie Hall with an 80 piece orchestra.

2. Of the songs being performed, what are some of your favorite selections? There are just so many big 11 o'clock numbers in this concert, but if I had to choose, we are featuring the orchestra in some great music from West Side Story, which I never get tired of performing and conducting. Stephanie J. Block does the best "Defying Gravity" I've ever heard in my life, and hearing Andrew and Stephanie do "Move On" from Sunday in the Park with George is another favorite of mine. Andrew is singing a song that I was just introduced to a few years ago by Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty, who wrote the song,  called "Love Who You Love," which has become a bit of a mantra for me. It's just so powerful.

Stephanie J. Block and Andrew Rannells preview "Move On"

3. Why should the fans come see The New York Pops On Broadway? I think it's a no brainer to come hear Stephanie J. Block and Andrew Rannells sing with this amazing orchestra and we are going to do great hits that everybody loves. We do one night only, which is very special here in this city. I always try to make our concerts an event that if you weren't there, you missed out on something. You have to be there that night because something great is going to happen.

4. This is The New York Pops 31st Season. What excites you to keep going with them? Well, they are the best Pops orchestra on the planet and we get to perform at the finest concert on on the planet, in the best city on the planet. It's quite a thrill every time I get to take the stage with The New York Pops. We've planned out the next season already, which we are very excited about. We continue to grow by leaps and bounds, selling-out all of our concerts. There's a lot of excitement and everyone is just happy to come to work. So, it's a lot of fun to be part of it.

Call Me Adam and Andrew RannellsAndrew Rannells:

1. You are going to be performing once again with The New York Pops on March 21 at 7:30pm in their show On Broadway. What are you looking forward to about this evening? I'm so honored that they asked me to do it. I'm so excited to be working with Steven Reineke again and to be singing with Stephanie J. Block, and while I've known her for a long time, this is our first time singing together. She's no joke, so when you work with her, you got to bring it.

2. You've performed with The New York Pops before, so what excites about coming back to sing with the Pops and work with Steven Reineke again? I was so nervous when I sang with them at their Spring Gala in 2012 that I don't remember it. I mean, I remember that I sang, I think it sounded okay, and then I walked off-stage and I didn't remember anything. So, this time around, I'm sure I'll be petrified, but at least I'll have time to warm up before it. We are doing a whole two acts of many, many songs, so hopefully I'll remember something [laughs].

3. Which songs are you looking forward to performing most? I'm really excited about "Move On" because it's been so fun to bring it to life. I'm getting to sing "Being Alive" from Company, which for every Tenor in my opinion is a dream song to sing.

Andrew Rannells previews "The Streets Of Dublin"

4. If you could give people a reason to come see you perform with The New York Pops on March 21 at 7:30pm, what would that reason be, aside from coming to see you? Stephanie J. Block is a big reason. The New York Pops is a huge, huge orchestra which you don't really get to hear anymore, plus we are going to be singing an array of Broadway songs from classics to contemporary. There is something for everyone.

5. I know The New Normal is not part of this evening, but what is like to go from working in theatre to working in television and how do you feel your training in one helps you with the other? I feel very fortunate that while I was doing The Book of Mormon, Lena Dunham, cast me Girls on HBO. I got to do The Book of Mormon at night and work on Girls during the day, which was very exciting. Lena was so generous and so lovely that after we did the first couple of scenes, she would let me watch the playback of them, since she was directing the episodes as well, so I got to see what we did. I saw I didn't have to project as much for television as I do for theatre. I'm allowed to be as internal as I wanna be because the camera picks all of that up. That was a big adjustment for me. So, by the time I got to do The New Normal, I had done two seasons of Girls already, but The New Normal was a little different because network shows move faster, so I didn't have the luxury to check my work after we filmed, but I was more confident in myself by the time we started filming The New Normal. 

6. If you could have any super power, which one would you choose? I would love to be able to teleport.

7. Boxers or Briefs? Briefs today. Not always. Sometimes it's a boxer. You have to mix it up.

Call Me Adam and Stephanie J. BlockStephanie J. Block:

1. What excites you about performing in this concert? I'm thrilled to be back with The Pops. I was lucky enough to perform at The New York Pops Gala last year and sang "Don't Rain On My Parade," and Steven Reineke said to me, "You are going to be coming back to this stage singing that song at some point, I don't know when," and that when is now.

2. Out of all the songs you are performing, which ones are you most looking forward to singing, in addition to "Don't Rain On My Parade"? I think Sondheim because I've never performed it professionally. It's challenging, touching, and so beautiful. When you get an 80 piece orchestra to play his stuff there is nothing like it. The list of composers that were chosen for this program are pretty great. In addition to Sondheim, we are also singing Stephen Schwartz, Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty, and so many more). A lot of big notes. A lot of 11 o'clock numbers.

Stephanie J. Block previews "Don't Rain On My Parade"

3. You've performed with The New York Pops before. What do you love about working with them and Steven Reineke? Their musicianship is remarkable, but Steven Reineke is a showman in of himself. You don't just get his back and a baton, you get a guy who is SO invested in his musicians and his performers and we can tell that he is really there with us and it's not a detached thing where the singers are not part of what they are creating and performing. I love that. You can feel his support. He breathes with you. He's the third soloist, well, he's the first soloist actually.

4. If you could give the fans one reason why they should come to On Broadway with The New York Pops on March 21 at 7:30pm, what would it be? On Broadway we are lucky enough to have incredible musicians. There are 15, sometimes 23, but when you hear musical theatre scores with 12 cellos, an entire horn section, 14 violins, there's nothing to explain that experience. The textures, the colors, the nuance, it's really exceptional and takes the music to a completely different place.

5. If you could have any super power, which one would you choose? Mmmm...I know a lot of people say flying, but I would be invisible. When the time is right, I would love to just disappear and become invisible. I think you would learn a lot and I think you could change the world a lot.

More on The New York Pops:

The New York Pops is the largest independent pops orchestra in the United States, and the only professional symphonic orchestra in New York City specializing in popular music. Under the leadership of dynamic Music Director and Conductor Steven Reineke, The New York Pops continues to re-imagine orchestral pops music. The orchestra performs an annual subscription series and birthday gala at Carnegie Hall. The New York Pops is dedicated to lifelong learning, and collaborates with public schools, community organizations, children’s hospitals and senior centers throughout the five boroughs of New York City. PopsEd allows thousands of New Yorkers of all ages and backgrounds to participate in fully customizable music programs that blend traditional education with pure fun.

Steven ReinekeMore on Steven Reineke:

Steven Reineke is the Music Director of The New York Pops at Carnegie Hall, Principal Pops Conductor of the National Symphony Orchestra at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and Principal Pops Conductor of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Reineke is a frequent guest conductor with The Philadelphia Orchestra and has been on the podium with the Boston Pops, The Cleveland Orchestra and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at Ravinia. His extensive North American conducting appearances include San Francisco, Houston, Seattle, Edmonton and Pittsburgh. As the creator of more than one hundred orchestral arrangements for the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra, Mr. Reineke’s work has been performed worldwide, and can be heard on numerous Cincinnati Pops Orchestra recordings on the Telarc label. His symphonic works Celebration Fanfare, Legend of Sleepy Hollow and Casey at the Bat are performed frequently in North America. His numerous wind ensemble compositions are published by the C.L. Barnhouse Company and are performed by concert bands around the world. A native of Ohio, Mr. Reineke is a graduate of Miami University of Ohio, where he earned bachelor of music degrees with honors in both trumpet performance and music composition. He currently resides in New York City with his partner Eric Gabbard.

Stephanie J. BlockMore on Stephanie J. Block:

Stephanie J. Block has established herself as one of the most relevant and versatile voices in contemporary musical theatre. She most recently starred as "Sheryl Hoover" in the Off-Broadway production of Little Miss Sunshine written by James Lapine and William Finn. She received both a Drama Desk and Tony Award nomination for her portrayal of "Alice Nutting/Edwin Drood" in The Mystery of Edwin Drood. Other Broadway credits include Anything Goes and 9 to 5: The Musical, for which she earned a Drama Desk nomination. She created the roles of "Grace O'Malley" in The Pirate Queen and "Liza Minnelli" in The Boy From Oz (opposite Hugh Jackman). Ms. Block is best known for her portrayal of "Elphaba" in the Broadway company of Wicked. She also originated the role in the first national tour, for which she won numerous awards, including the prestigious Helen Hayes Award. Ms. Block has sung with numerous orchestras including The New York Pops, Boston Pops, National Symphony Orchestra (under the baton of Marvin Hamlisch), Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, Utah Symphony, Columbus Symphony, Charlotte Symphony Orchestra and the Cleveland Pops, among many others. For more on Stephanie be sure to visit: http://www.stephaniejblock.com and follow her on Twitter!

Andrew RannellsMore on Andrew Rannells:

Andrew Rannells is best known for his breakout role as "Elder Price" in Broadway’s Tony Award winning musical The Book of Mormon, which was created by Trey Parker and Matt Stone of "South Park" fame along with Robert Lopez of Avenue Q. The Book of Mormon received 9 Tony Awards including Best Musical, and on the 2011 Tony Awards telecast Rannells brought down the house with his performance of "I Believe." For his work in The Book of Mormon Rannells received Tony, Drama Desk and Drama League award nominations. He also won a Grammy Award for "Best Musical Theatre Album" for the cast recording of The Book of Mormon. He can currently be seen in third season of HBO’s Golden Globe-winning comedy series Girls, from producers Lena Dunham and Judd Apatow. Last year Rannells starred as "Bryan Collins" in Ryan Murphy's groundbreaking series The New Normal for NBC. Rannells is a native of Omaha, Nebraska. For more on Andrew follow him on Twitter!