Nicholas Belton is a rising performer who can also satisfy your taste buds! He was most recently seen in the Off-Broadway hit "See Rock City" (with his fellow original "Hair" cast member Bryce Ryness). He "Defied Gravity" in the Chicago production of "Wicked" at The Goodman Theatre. Nicholas has also been seen delighting audiences at The Court Theatre, Long Warf Theatre, Playwrights Horizons, Transport Group, Chicago Shakespeare, and Idaho Shakespeare. He has shined on CBS' "The Guiding Light" and in the film "Jail City." When Nicholas is not performing on stage, he's dishing out his latest creation as a personal chef! Check out his blog http://boxerchef.blogspot.com/.
Currently, Nicholas can been seen in the Broadway tour of "Hair," which is currently making it's NYC stop at the St. James Theatre through September 10. (246 West 44th Street, between Broadway & 8th Avenue). Click here for tickets!
1. Who or what inspired you to become a performer? I had have to say my oldest brother Patrick who's an actor out in LA. Also my parents were always involved in the arts. Dad is a theatre director. Mom is a calligrapher.
2. Who is the one person you haven't worked with that you would like to? I'd love to work with Jamie Oliver.
3. What initially attracted you to "Hair" and what has made you stay with the show for so long? What is your favorite part about being on tour with the show? The major attraction to "Hair" was the message of the piece. The simple idea of a generation of young people questioning their patriotism is huge and really doing so many things for the first time. I stay with "Hair" because the show is fun. It's a good schedule and we have breaks and the people behind it are risk takers and I respect that. My favorite part about tour is getting to explore, especially eating, and then to write about each new town and the food and culture. Otherwise what's the point if you don't get out and look around. Check out my blog http://boxerchef.blogspot.com/
4. What is your favorite part of the rehearsal/preview period in a show? My favorite part of the rehearsal would be knowing that these people I'm working with, that I barely know, will be my family very soon. That's pretty cool.
5. Favorite place to rehearse/practice on your own? Right now my air conditioned room is the perfect spot to rehearse.
6. What have you learned about yourself from being a performer? I've learned that honesty's the only way to go.
7. Favorite way to stay in shape? The show! Its like a 2 hour cardio circus.
8. Boxers or Briefs? Neither.
9. Favorite website? Pandora. I love finding and buying music I've never heard.
10. Superman or Wonder Woman? Wonder Woman of course! She can get away with more therefore more tactful therefore more tools.
11. What's the best advice you've ever received? Stay as far away from failure as possible.
12. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? A really good therapist.
13. How did you become a personal chef and what do you get from being a personal chef that you don't get from performing? I quit the biz after "Wicked" in '07. And I knew I wanted to cook professionally but I didn't want to go to school, so I got jobs at some notable spots in the city, with my favorite being an intern at the Spotted Pig in the West Village. I wanted to start a business and put the energy out in the universe that I would be cooking and it happened.
I got used to cooking for friends during Notre Dame games at my NYC apt. A friend Peter introduced me to another ND fan he brought over, Matt. We all sampled some of my baby back ribs and deviled eggs. He asked about the food and I eventually told him I wanted to start a business doing passed hors doeuvres....about 2 months down the line I was doing his 30th Park Avenue house Christmas party for 50 very Catholic mostly lawyers, priests, etc. I hired friends who were actor/caterers who helped me out and out of that party, I got hired two more times for parties of 100. This was all by word of mouth. I didn't even have a website. And then "Hair" happened which kind of interrupted everything.
As a personal Chef, I get a different language and a different art form. Definitely more laborious but more worth the wait when you can create food with your hands.