It seems like every actor on Broadway’s ready to enroll at McKinley High.
In its short but certainly phenomenal lifespan, “Glee’s” proven as powerful a mainstream platform for stars of musical theater as it has a catalyst for record sales of old Journey songs.
Along with regular cast members tapped for TV after Broadway breakouts – Matthew Morrison (“Hairspray, “The Light in the Piazza,” “South Pacific”) Lea Michele (“Spring Awakening”) and Jenna Ushkowitz (“Spring Awakening”), the show’s served ad a wide-audience showcase for multitalented guest stars including Idina Menzel (“Rent,” “Wicked”), Jonathan Groff (“Spring Awakening”), Cheyenne Jackson (“All Shook Up,” “Xanadu,” “Damn Yankees”), John Lloyd Young (“Jersey Boys”) and Kristin Chenoweth (“You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown,” “Wicked”), who’s even enticed “Glee” creator Ryan Murphy to craft a new series for her to star in.
Given the show’s ease of stage-to-small-screen transitioning, Popcorn Biz posed the question to a slate of musical theater standouts: just how bad do you want to be on “Glee?”
Stephanie J. Block (“Wicked,” “9 to 5”):
“I would LOVE to! And when I saw Lea Michele – we both know each other from, of course, Broadway – I said ‘I could be her surrogate mama!’ And then sure enough a few months later there was Idina playing the surrogate mama and I went ‘Drat!’ But when I look at Lea certainly there are a little of physical and vocal similarities, so ‘Glee’ would be a perfect match. Start that rumor going! Put it out there!”
David Burnham (“The Light in the Piazza,” “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat”):
“Matthew Morrison and I actually did ‘The Light In the Piazza’ on Broadway together. I was his understudy, so that would be a lot of fun to do that show – especially working with Matt again. I would do anything on that show. It’s the biggest show in the world right now, and for people who sing and act it’s a dream come true.”
Valerie Perri (“Evita,” “Jesus Christ Superstar”)
“I don’t think there’s one actor or actress anywhere who wouldn’t want to be on that show. It’s a wonderful show, it’s got so much energy and it’s just a wonderful vehicle for anybody. And I’m just very, very happy that finally on television they’re doing something with music. I think I’d like to play a schoolteacher, absolutely – maybe a dance instructor.”
Yancey Arias (“Miss Saigon,” “The Wild Party”)
“I would embrace any project that would give me all that I have to offer. I heard so much about ‘Glee’ and I did catch several episodes and enjoyed them all. I’d probably be either a sports coach that sings – to change it around, all of sudden this jock is like ‘Hold on, I used to sing! Take me out to the ballgame…’”
Traci Thoms (“Rent,” “Drowning Crow”)
“I’m dying to get on ‘Glee.’ I just keep trying to tell them that they need to go on ahead and call me, unless they want me to make up my own ‘Glee’ for the rejects, a ‘Glee’ rejects show. I’ve thought about who I’d want to play: someone who comes back to visit, like a butting-in relative of Amber Riley’s. Someone who’s like ‘You’re in the group and singing all those high notes – don’t let them use up your voice like that!’ Just telling her what she thinks Mercedes should be doing.”