Love & Warr is a candid, irreverent and entertaining evening sharing his thoughts on a certain 4-Letter Word. Joshua uses songs from Broadway (Aida), standards (Rodgers & Hart), pop (The Jackson 5, Diane Warren) and rock (Pink) to uncover "The Truth About Love" with passion, wit and humor. The show features a special "surprise" duet with Stormy Weatherz, Joshua’s inseparably close friend and confidant. Love & Warr is directed by multi-award winner Miles Phillips with Jason Wynn as Music Director leading the band.
1. On April 10, you are debuting your new show Love & Warr at 54 Below. What are you looking forward to most about performing this new show? This show is a party, a celebration. And it is so much fun to do! I've had this show in my head for so many years, I'm just excited to finally let it loose! The songs are so much fun to sing. The band is extraordinary, led by the incomparable Jason Wynn and my back-up singers are bringing down the house. Samantha Northart and Rob Langeder have some serious instruments in those throats! One of my best friends, Jess Hryniewicki, is playing guitar in one of the songs, so to get to jam with her is so cool! She's my Patti Smith. I'm dancing in it, of course. And I had a custom-made suit made for the show...custom! (I have these gorgeous red shoes to go with it. And vintage cuff links. Ok, I'll stop gushing now). To top it all off, working with Miles Phillips and Jason Wynn has been a dream team. We are excited to share this show with the world. And to be doing it at 54 Below is mind blowing. I feel so blessed. This is one of Miles' last shows he's directing before he leaves NYC for the magical islands of Hawaii. I'm touched he's leaving his mark on this show. He's been a wonderful mentor to me.
2. What excites you about performing at 54 Below? I saw Patti LuPone there TWICE when 54 Below first opened. I remember thinking how beautiful the room was, how spectacular the people performing there were, and how much I wanted to do a show there, too! And I am finally getting to do just that. It just so happens that Patti LuPone is the 7pm show to my 9:30pm slot on Friday, April 10th. If that isn't a treat, I don't know what is! All of my friends keep asking me if I am going to make a Patti LuPone joke in my show...And I'm all like, "wait, can you even do that and live to tell of it?"
3. In Love & Warr, you are going to be sharing your thoughts on a certain 4-letter word. As a confirmed bachelor, what is at least one thing you've discovered about love that you are not going to be talking about in the show? My parallel love life with Tina Turner's black eyes. I've decided to leave thaaaaaat stuff out of the show.
4. What do you hope audiences come away with after seeing your concert Love & Warr? I want to give the audience a full range of love to experience, the light and the dark. I keep saying to people that this is an antithesis to your typical love show...but then again, not really. The most important thing for me is to celebrate. Sometimes love makes us do stupid things, and if the audience can see or hear parts of themselves through the songs I'm singing, then hopefully they'll have experienced something meaningful for themselves. But it can also be just a show for everyone that will have people dancing in their seats and singing along to the songs. We've changed up the way a lot of these songs have been heard in the past, I'm really excited for the arrangements! I think everyone will come away dancing in the streets. And 54th street is the perfect place.
5. What made you want to do a duet with your alter ego "Stormy Weatherz" as opposed to giving her a solo number? What do you like most about performing with her? Hah! She will love you for asking that. I'm pretty sure she DID want her own solo spot. This part of the show is super fun. For the longest time, I've had the idea to do Love & Warr. And in my dreaming up the show, one day I thought "I need to do a duet with myself." Ya know, as we all think...and so a Stormy duet popped into my head and I didn't stop talking about to my design team for over a year. It has exceeded all of my expectations! Jason Courson shot the scene and Todd Trosclair curated all of the fashion in it. And the gorgeous Pixie Aventura made sure Stormy looked equally gorgeous. Just wait until you see her! I think what I like most about this duet with her, is that Stormy Weatherz is so unapologetically free and uninhibited; so, it's fun to watch her do her thing up there. She's a show stopper, ladies and gentlemen! She even has her own bow in the show. She's getting the royal treatment. I think I'm a pretty damn good alter to her. ;)
6. With an endless supply of songs about love to choose from, how did you decide on your set list for the songs you are going to perform? I have a rule, make the obligatory first draft song list and then throw out half. Then pick, like, four songs to keep from that list. This hopefully whittles out the common or over-sung songs. This show has had about seven different set lists since I've started writing it. At first they were all angry songs. Then really depressing songs. They've gradually softened into much deeper songs for me. Songs that touch my soul somehow. And to get to the set list we are using today, I studied lyrics for what seems like so long. I listened to just about every song that either said "love" in the lyrics, had "love" in the title, or was categorized as a "love song." And if something struck me or moved me, I jotted that song title down and came back later to explore the song deeper. When we all (Miles Phillips my director, Jason Wynn my musical director) got into the rehearsal room and I was singing through the songs we had finally picked, it all just clicked and made so much sense. And of course it is all about the order, Miles Phillips is a genius when it comes to arranging the order of the songs. I had a vision for how I wanted the show to progress, he helped finesse how that journey is experienced by the listener. I love these songs. This show's set list is by far my favorite to date.
7. Who or what inspired you to become a performer? Patrick Swayze (To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar). Alan Cumming (Cabaret -1st revival). John Cameron Mitchell (Hedwig and the Angry Inch). Lypsinka. Just, everything Lypsinka. Sutton Foster. I used to do these long distance endurance bike rides to Thoroughly Modern Millie. I'm probably NOT the only one who exercised to her belting, too. And the first Broadway actor I ever met was Robert Evan when he was doing Jekyll & Hyde...he asked me what I wanted to do when I was older. I told him I wanted to do what he did. He gave me the warmest and sweetest advice. But this list could go on and on! Music helped me escape in so many ways, I listened to so many singers! Liza Minnelli, Barbra Streisand, Ben Vereen, Patti LuPone, Gavin Creel, Linda Eder, Shania Twain...yeah, I'm from Upstate, NY. You can take the boy out of the woods, but you can't take the woods out of the boy! Yeah gym class line-dancing!
8. What's the best advice you've ever received? When I was working in retail I was helping Makeba Riddick (songwriter for Beyoncé and Rihanna) and she and I were chatting about the idea of using my last name in a title because she liked it so much, and I said I had always flirted with using "Love & Warr" and she told me I absolutely had to find a way to use it. Um, she wrote Déjà Vu. When God speaks, you listen. That was almost 9 years ago, better late than never. I studied acting with Maggie Flanigan. She has given me so much of her wisdom over the years. She instilled in me a sense of true crafting. Her advice is priceless, I feel I am where I am today because of her guidance. And my parents, two incredibly hard working and giving role models. My dad always told me "excuses are reasons to fail" and he made it very clear he didn't want to hear excuses from us growing up. So I am incredibly competitive and don't give up very easily! And my mom makes sure I stay true to the love and light in this world. She gently reminds me to make sure I pay it forward more, give back more, and help thy neighbor when they are in need of it. She's an Irish Catholic, gotta love her. So full of love. I've seen my parents be so incredibly selfless so many times before it makes me want to do the same with my life.
9. What have you learned about yourself from being a performer? I've learned to let go more. To bring all of me to the table every time. To be more truthful, and try to be as present as you can be in every moment. It's incredibly grounding. Because most of the time I'm bouncing off the walls! I've also realized how much I love post show energy. Live theatre is exhilarating. There is nothing like it. The effect is immediate. And I love experiencing that!
10. If you could have any super power, which one would you choose? Psionic powers for sure! I see a little, er a lot of, Emma Frost in Stormy Weatherz.
11. If you could create your own signature drink, what would you call it and what ingredients would you put in it? Right now I'm obsessed with tequila so whatever it is called it has to have tequila in it. Maybe some grapefruit juice. Some salt and lime juice. Definitely some St. Germain in it too, because then you're just bougie. And I'd call it...De La Warr.
12. Favorite way to stay in shape? I live on the 5th floor of a walk-up, and on 11th Avenue. Every time I run an errand it's like I've gone to the gym. So I just make sure to run a lot of errands.
13. Boxers or Briefs? I'm totally a briefs guy! I have so many amazing briefs in my underwear drawer. But there's definitely something sexy about a guy in boxers. Am I right!?
Joshua Warr – who stars as "Harris" in Logo TV’s hit web-series Hunting Season, which will air its second season in 2015 – also appeared in the reality dinner party competition Dinner Takes All on TLC, in addition to his role last month as "Young Philip" on FX TV’s The Americans. His New York theater credits include Dangerous Walk; Love, Genius and a Walk; sExtOrtiOn; Pride River Crossing; Knight of the Burning Pestle; The Revival; Raft of the Medusa; The Servant of Two Masters; Elegies for Angels, Punks and Raging Queens; Soul Ascending (La MaMa). Other film and TV credits include Law & Order: SVU on NBC, All That Glitters, Outliers and PX This: The Series. Joshua is also a director, having helmed Tape, An Infinite Ache and The Blue Djinn.
As a nightclub entertainer, Warr is a MAC and BroadwayWorld Award nominee for his shows Sing No Evil and Joshing Around. He was praised for his "great range and dynamic personality" by Times Square Chronicles and his performance was called a "clever and frothy dose of fun" byBroadwayWorld.com. Originally from Potsdam NY, Joshua studied French and Dance at Hobart and William Smith Colleges. He moved to New York in 2005 to pursue a career in dance which took him to a tour through South Korea, before returning to the US and training full time with Maggie Flanigan.