Friday, April 06, 2012

Q & A with Godspell's "Wunderstudies"

So I already told you about the understudy talkback at Godspell, but "wunderstudies" (as they're known to their fans) Eric Michael Krop, Corey Mach, and Hannah Elless were nice enough to answer some bonus questions for all of you. So read on to find out the best places to eat by the theater, what it's like to find confetti everywhere, and more:

Q: Because most characters go by their own names in the show, how do you differentiate between different tracks? Is it a combination of your own personality and the person usually in that track?

Eric Michael Krop: Each of the three main boys that I cover are so different. Back in rehearsals, [director] Danny Goldstein put it perfectly. He told us understudies that when we go on, we do get to play ourselves, but through the telescope of the person we go on for. Because there is no actual "character" to study, but more of a personality type, we have a lot more freedom.

Corey Mach: Pretty much. Each track has a basic character trait that is seen throughout the whole show. I try to incorporate as much of the person I'm playing into the character, as well as a little touch of my own personality.

Hannah Elless: Every character in Godspell has a different story arc and song, so as long as you follow their journey and be yourself it usually works out pretty well. Our director Danny has said before, and I think that it's really true, that the best way to approach this show is to be yourself. No matter what track I am performing, I make sure to bring a lot of myself to the role so that it's honest.

Q: Do you have a favorite track to perform?

Eric: I can't choose! I love singing Telly's songs, but I really love being the smart ass when I go on for Nick. Overall, George's track might be the most fun because of how silly he is.

Corey: Probably Jesus. It's such a ride, and our director, Danny, gave me free ride to make the role my own and inject as much as my personality as possible. I also prefer to be in charge onstage, and all of the characters rely on Jesus through the majority of the show, which generates a huge payback towards the end of the show. It's a fantastic journey.

Hannah: This is a hard question to answer because all of the tracks have different little nuances and moments that I love! I guess, for me, being on stage in any role is thrilling--I really try to soak it up. And I am an "instrument" girl, so of course I always enjoy the track that plays all the instruments.

Q: The first time I saw Godspell was back in January and I was still finding confetti in my purse and shoes months after. Do you constantly find confetti everywhere? Is that annoying?

Eric: It is not annoying to find confetti everywhere. I actually went on last night, and found confetti stuck to my chest a few hours later.

Corey: It's pretty funny right? I find it in my room, in my shoes, bookbags, at friends' houses. I bring it everywhere with me on accident. The best is when I find it blocks from the theatre!

Hannah: YES! That Godspell confetti will show up in the strangest of places! I'll be pulling my wallet out of my purse at Starbucks and a piece of confetti will fall out. I'm used to the strange looks--I consider it a Godspell badge of honor!
Q: What do you do while the show is going on when you're not performing or watching the show from the audience?

Eric: I like to get work done! When I'm not chatting it up with the other understudies, we are watching our favorite TV shows, writing songs, and just last week I did some audio editing for a friend's live show.

Corey: Recently I've been catching up on a lot of TV--Downton Abbey, Six Feet Under, and now Breaking Bad. The other understudies and I play Wii, write music, and sometimes play games.

Hannah: I watch the show pretty frequently. But if I'm not tracking someone that day, I'm usually in my dressing room working on material for other projects that I'm involved with like concerts, readings, writing my own music, etc. Or catching up on Top Chef episodes--cause let's be honest, I'm obsessed with that series.

Q: What's your favorite place to eat by the theater?

Eric: Well, I live 5 blocks from the theater, so there are kind of too many restaurants to name. But if I had to choose, I would say AOKI sushi on 48th. Great lunch specials and the most amazing sushi.

Corey: I love Cosi! So many options. I've been also known to frequent Chipotle, Qdoba, and Subway.

Hannah: I just found Chai Thai Kitchen on 55th St. and 8th Ave. It's wonderful! Order the Pad Sea Eiw--you will not be disappointed!

Q: Is there a show that you saw or performed in that made you know that you wanted to pursue musical theater for a living?

Eric: I knew from a very young age that I wanted to sing, and as I got older I had to come up with a plan. Musical theater is so fun to do and I get to sing! I really fell in love with musical theater while doing a children's theater production of Jesus Christ Superstar playing Jesus. It was the first time I felt like a rockstar.

Corey: When I was in first grade, my mom took me to see the tour of Cats in Cleveland. I knew before that show that I wanted to pursue acting, but I think the spectacle and the music made it the clincher for me that early on. I hate the show now, but being in first grade and seeing these huge, realistic cats in front of me--but they were actors--made me want to do the same thing.

Hannah: It was a slow boil for me. I can remember watching a community theater production of Annie when I was very young and getting goose bumps. Little did I know that many shows, and many goose bumps later I would be performing in my first Broadway musical!

1 comment:

California Theatre said...

Q and A's are great ways to get into the heart of the performers. As Eric, Corey, and Hannah all expressed, their personalities were important in developing their roles on stage. And Q/A sessions, as this one, help develop the actors even further.