"Work as hard as you can and then work harder." - Chatting with THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA's Derrick Davis!

"Work as hard as you can and then work harder." - Chatting with THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA's Derrick Davis!

I would like you to meet Derrick Davis. Derrick will be returning to the title role in the North American tour of The Phantom of the Opera beginning June 6th at Los Angeles Hollywood Pantages Theatre and will remain with the restaged production through the final national tour engagement in Toronto, Ontario at the Princess of Wales Theatre. Mr. Davis was seen in the Broadway revival of Carousel as well as the National Tour of The Lion King. It was quite an honor and a privilege to have the chance to interview Derrick as he discusses his journey.   

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"Stay Curious. About yourself and the process." - Chatting with Grand Hotel's Natascia Diaz!

"Stay Curious. About yourself and the process." - Chatting with Grand Hotel's Natascia Diaz!

I would like you to meet the amazingly talented Natascia Diaz. Natascia is currently starring as Elizaveta Grushinskaya in Grand Hotel at Signature Theatre in Virginia (Directed by Eric Schaeffer). At Signature she has been seen in West Side Story (Anita), Jesus Christ Superstar (Mary) as well as Fosca in Passion and Jenny in The Threepenny Opera (both performances earning her a Helen Hayes Award Nomination). On Broadway, she has been seen in Man of La Mancha and Seussical and has toured in West Side Story (Anita).

Many of you though may remember her in the documentary film Every Little Step. Natascia is an amazing spirit with an unbelievable stage presence. When you see her name on the bill, you are indeed in for an unforgettable treat. It was truly an honor to interview her!

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“Explore and expose yourself to all aspects of the craft.” - Chatting with THE WHO'S TOMMY’s Sharrod Williams!

“Explore and expose yourself to all aspects of the craft.” - Chatting with THE WHO'S TOMMY’s Sharrod Williams!

I would like you to meet Sharrod Williams. Sharrod will be performing in the ensemble of The Who’s Tommy at the Kennedy Center (directed and choreographed by Josh Rhodes). Mr. Williams has been seen on Broadway in Cats (Pouncival), and Tuck Everlasting and in the Chicago company of Hamilton. This triple threat has also performed in over 40 states on national tours. The sky is the limit for this talented young man, and I honestly feel the best is yet to come for Sharrod. It was such an honor to have the chance to interview him!

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"You alone are your biggest obstacle." - Chatting with MEAN GIRLS's Christine Shepard!

"You alone are your biggest obstacle." - Chatting with MEAN GIRLS's Christine Shepard!

I would like you to meet the wonderful Christine Shepard. Christine can currently be seen performing in the Ensemble of Mean Girls on Broadway at The August Wilson Theatre. Before making her ensemble debut, she was a swing in Head Over Heels on Broadway. She will be receiving a BFA in commercial dance and a minor in Business this spring from Pace University. Student by day, Broadway performer by night. It was quite an honor and privilege for Christine to take time out of her busy schedule to give me the chance to interview her!

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Five Young Performers Who Are Killing It Right Now

Five Young Performers Who Are Killing It Right Now

A little over a year ago I had the privilege of writing about five young artists this country should know! I received a lot of excellent feedback about that article and thought it would be a cool idea to turn this into a yearly thing. There is nothing more rewarding than working with kids in theatre. There are some fantastic communities in this country that is producing some amazing young talent. Here are another five young artists you should know about in this country!   

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“Know your technique and always be open to keep learning!” – Chatting with WEST SIDE STORY’s Juan Caballer Prades!

“Know your technique and always be open to keep learning!” – Chatting with WEST SIDE STORY’s Juan Caballer Prades!

I would like you to meet the talented Juan Callaber Prades. This triple threat will be performing in the Lyric Opera in Chicago’s production of West Side Story (a show he has performed previously at The Barrington Stage) where he’ll be playing the role of Tiger and understudy for the role of Chino. Some other recent credits include Jerome Robbins Broadway 30th Anniversary Reunion, as well performing in Evita at The Asolo Repertory Theatre and Riverside Theatre, and Guys and Dolls at The Old Globe Theatre and The Asolo Repertory Theatre. Juan has an amazing presence on the stage that draws you to him. It was a complete honor to have the chance to interview this fantastic triple threat of a performer!

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From Front of House to Center Stage - Chatting with HARRY POTTER AND THE CURSED CHILD’s Sarita Amani Nash!

From Front of House to Center Stage - Chatting with HARRY POTTER AND THE CURSED CHILD’s Sarita Amani Nash!

Let me tell you, I have had the privilege of doing interviews for OnStage Blog for well over a year now, and some stories are just so amazing, surreal, and inspiring. Some of these interviews and hearing these artist stories strongly remind me that if you work hard for your dreams, your dreams will work hard for you.

With that said it is my honor to introduce you to the wonderful Sarita Amani Nash.

Sarita is making her Broadway debut in Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (Parts 1 & 2) at the Lyric Theatre. What makes her debut so special is that for four years before making her Broadway debut on the Lyric Theatre Stage, Sarita’s ‘survival’ job was ushering at the Lyric Theatre. The very people that she was showing to their seats at the Lyric are now sitting in those very seats watching her perform on the Lyric stage in Harry Potter 8 times a week. How cool is that? Some stories truly write themselves, and I feel this is only the first chapter for this amazing young actress.

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"Leave the attitude at the door and show up excited!" - Chatting with BEETLEJUICE’s Jill Abramovitz!

"Leave the attitude at the door and show up excited!" - Chatting with BEETLEJUICE’s Jill Abramovitz!

I would you like to meet the talented Jill Abramovitz. Jill is currently on Broadway in Beetlejuice, which recently began previews at the Winter Garden Theatre, playing the role(s) of Maxine Dean, June, and Ensemble. Jill has also been previously seen on Broadway in Fiddler on the Roof, Cinderella, 9 ot 5 and Martin Short’s: Fame Becomes Me. I am a huge fan of her and this show, so to have the chance to interview Jill is wonderful, wonderful, wonderful!

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“You have to love it and know you cannot do anything else.” - Chatting with INTO THE WOODS' Erin Driscoll!

 “You have to love it and know you cannot do anything else.” -  Chatting with INTO THE WOODS' Erin Driscoll!

I would like you to meet the wonderful and talented Erin Driscoll. Erin can currently be seen playing the role of Cinderella at Ford’s Theatre which runs until May 22nd. Erin also appeared in Ford's Theatre's production of Violet where she performed the title role. The first time I had the chance to see Erin perform was when she played the role of Hope Cladwell in Urinetown at Signature Theatre in Virginia (A role that earned her a Helen Hayes Award). Throughout the years, Erin has become a real staple in the Washington DC Theatre scene, and everyone who has seen her perform can attest that she is truly worth the price of admission. I am very honored to have the chance to interview her.

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“Be yourself and love whatever and whoever that is at the moment.” – Chatting with BE MORE CHILL's Morgan Siobhan Green!

“Be yourself and love whatever and whoever that is at the moment.” – Chatting with BE MORE CHILL's Morgan Siobhan Green!

I would like you to meet Morgan Siobhan Green. Morgan is making her Broadway debut in Be More Chill where she understudies for Christine, Brooke, Chloe, Jenna, and ‘as cast.’ Before that, she was seen Off-Broadway in Folk Wandering (ARTNY), and Sweetee (Signature). She has also performed regionally in Between the Lines (Pre Broadway). I always admire understudies and swings who perform on Broadway because as many will tell you they have a lot on their plate, so it was quite an honor to have the opportunity to interview Morgan! 

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“Ingest all kinds of art and culture.” – Chatting with BE MORE CHILL's Katlyn Carlson!

“Ingest all kinds of art and culture.” – Chatting with BE MORE CHILL's Katlyn Carlson!

I would like you to meet Katlyn Carlson. Katlyn is currently making her Broadway debut in the Joe Iconis hit Be More Chill where she is playing the role of Chloe Valentine, a role she played both in the recent Off-Broadway run and with The Two River Theater. She has also performed Off-Broadway in The Unavoidable Disappearance of Tom Durnin, and in the First National Tour of Dirty Dancing. It was such a privilege to have the chance to interview this very talented University of Chicago alum!

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“Write your own story and don’t be phased by rejection.” – Chatting with OKLAHOMA’s Chelsea Williams

“Write your own story and don’t be phased by rejection.” – Chatting with OKLAHOMA’s Chelsea Williams

What advice would you give young performers who want a career in this business?

Work on your craft! There are many things that may attract you to a career in Acting, but I will say you must love the craft above all. Get in a class. Get a mentor. Go see shows (Not just the ones you could be in but also the ones that you may not see yourself in). Meet people! First, believe in yourself. Then, surround yourself with people who believe in you! Become financially literate. Write your own story. Don’t be phased by rejection. You will most likely receive some form of it. Instead of asking “why me?” Ask “what is this teaching me?”. Carve out time to be somewhat normal. Learn to cook. Read a book. But most importantly get spiritual (whatever that means to you) and take care of yourself.

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“Make your work ethic the best it can ever be and greatness will follow.” – Chatting with TOOTSIE’s Anthony Wayne.

“Make your work ethic the best it can ever be and greatness will follow.” – Chatting with TOOTSIE’s Anthony Wayne.

I would like you to meet Anthony Wayne. This triple threat can currently be seen in Tootsie on Broadway performing in the ensemble. On Broadway Anthony has also been seen in the 2018 Tony Award Winning Revival Once on this Island as well as Pippin, Anything Goes and Priscilla Queen of the Dessert. He has performed in the touring companies of A Chorus Line (Richie), The Color Purple, and Fame: The Musical (Tyrone). He has also starred as the 1970’s disco legend Sylvester in the new show Mighty Real: A Fabulous Sylvester Musical! It was a privilege to have the chance to interview Anthony!

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“Don’t let “type” discourage you from pursuing roles you’re drawn to.” – Chatting with TOOTSIE’s Britney Coleman

“Don’t let “type” discourage you from pursuing roles you’re drawn to.” – Chatting with TOOTSIE’s Britney Coleman

I would like you to meet Britney Coleman. Britney will be performing in the ensemble of Tootsie on Broadway at The Marquis Theatre.

She has also been seen on Broadway in Sunset Boulevard, and Beautiful: The Carole King Musical (a show she also performed in the 1st National Tour). She has also performed with well respected regional companies such as Westport Country Playhouse, The Muny, Theatre Under The Stars (TUTS), The Old Globe, North Shore Music Theatre, and The Asolo Repertory Theatre. I am very thankful to have the chance to interview this very talented artist!

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“Have a good attitude, good energy, and be flexible.” – Chatting with AIN’T TOO PROUD'S Rashidra Scott

“Have a good attitude, good energy, and be flexible.” – Chatting with AIN’T TOO PROUD'S Rashidra Scott

I would like you to meet the wonderful Rashidra Scott. She will be performing the role of Josephine in Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and times of The Temptations on Broadway at The Imperial Theatre. Previews start February 28th with the official opening on March 21st. Rashidra Scott has also been seen on Broadway in Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, Sister Act (also in the 1st National Tour), Hair, Finian’s Rainbow, and Avenue Q (Gary Coleman). She has also performed regionally with Goodspeed Opera House, The Marriott Theatre, Paper Mill Playhouse, STAGES St. Louis, Arizona Theatre Company, and Walt Disney World Entertainment. I absolutely love the temptations music so for me it was quite a thrill to have the chance to interview Rashidra!

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“Your experience is valid and is meant to be shared on stage.” – Chatting with WAITRESS Swing Arica Jackson!

“Your experience is valid and is meant to be shared on stage.” – Chatting with WAITRESS Swing Arica Jackson!

I would like you to meet Arica Jackson. Arica is currently a Swing in Waitress on Broadway at The Brooks Atkinson Theatre. Before that, Ms. Jackson performed in the National tour of Waitress and most recently made her Broadway debut in Head Over Heels where she was the standby for the roles of Mopsa and Pamela. Her voice honestly knocks me out, and if you get the chance to see her perform, you are genuinely in for a wonderful treat! I was very excited to have the opportunity to interview her!

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"Talent without hard work won't get you anywhere" – Chatting with HADESTOWN performer Afra Hines!

"Talent without hard work won't get you anywhere" – Chatting with HADESTOWN performer Afra Hines!

I would like you to meet the wonderful Afra Hines. She will be performing in Hadestown on Broadway at The Walter Kerr Theatre with previews beginning March 22nd with the official opening on April 17th. Afra has performed on Broadway in Summer: The Donna Summer Musical (in which she was honored with the Legacy Robe), Shuffle Along, Motown the Musical, Soul Doctor, Ghost, In The Heights and Wicked. Ms. Hines has also toured with Hamilton. I have had the chance to see this amazing actress perform several times on stage and it was quite the honor and privilege to have the opportunity to interview her.

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HAMILTON's Isaiah Johnson discusses Puerto Rico and not beating yourself up between performing jobs!

HAMILTON's Isaiah Johnson discusses Puerto Rico and not beating yourself up between performing jobs!

I would like you to meet the amazing Isaiah Johnson. Isaiah just finished up playing the role for George Washington (a role he originated in the 1st National Tour) in Hamilton in Puerto Rico which has Lin Manuel-Miranda reprising his role of Alexander Hamilton. Isaiah has performed on Broadway in The Merchant of Venice (w/ Al Pacino), Peter and the Starcatcher, Side Show (2014 Revival), The Color Purple (2015 Revival). Isaiah will be starring in the upcoming original series for the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) titled David Makes Man, which is from Academy Award Winner Alvin McCraney (Moonlight) and Warner Horizon Scripted Television.

The first time I saw him perform was in D.C. and he has been someone I have admired ever since. So to have the chance to interview this amazing artist is an honor and a privilege.        

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“Be kind to yourself and others!” – Chatting with ALADDIN'S Alicia Charles!

“Be kind to yourself and others!” – Chatting with ALADDIN'S Alicia Charles!

I would like you to meet the wonderful and talented Alicia Charles. This newlywed will be returning to the ensemble of Aladdin at The New Amsterdam Theatre. I first met this amazing artist while we were both performing in a production of Guys and Dolls at The Asolo Repertory Theatre (Directed by Josh Rhodes). Before making her Broadway debut in Aladdin, Alicia performed in the 2010 National Tour of West Side Story as well as regionally for major theatre companies such as the Walnut Street Theatre in Philadelphia, Paper Mill Playhouse in New Jersey, and Theatre Under the Stars (TUTS) in Houston. I feel very fortunate to have the chance to interview this positive and beautiful spirit before her return to Agrabah.  

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“Always stay open as to where the path may lead you.” – Q & A with RENT Live on Fox’s Alton Fitzgerald White!

“Always stay open as to where the path may lead you.” –  Q & A with RENT Live on Fox’s Alton Fitzgerald White!

I would like you to meet the amazing Alton Fitzgerald White! A veteran in the theatre business Alton will be performing in RENT Live on Fox on January 27th! On Broadway Alton has appeared in The Color Purple, Ragtime, The Lion King, The Who’s Tommy and Miss Saigon. I first remember seeing Mr. White perform as Mufasa and it was honestly a complete honor to have the chance to interview this amazing artist!

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