In Part 2 of Ensemble Watch with The Lion King’s Ray Mercer and Jean Michelle Grier, Mercer talks about his giraffe, Gus, and how he manages on those stilts (14 feet high!). Grier reveals her favorite moment of performing in the show, and why she feels the ensemble is always in the spotlight.
Were you surprised that Ray doesn’t have to rehearse stilt walking, Rushers? Do you think the ensemble of The Lion King might be the most visible and featured on Broadway? Leave your thoughts in the comments below, and don’t forget to follow Stage Rush on Facebook and Twitter for on-the-go updates!
For 13 years, the on-stage spectacle of The Lion King has been flooring audience members, even bringing tears to the eyes of adults, and selling out performances (even to this day). From an ensemble that is as important as the show’s leads (if not more), Jean Michelle Grier and Ray Mercer discuss life in this uber-technical show in the latest Ensemble Watch. Both ensemble actors with featured roles (Grier plays Simba’s mother Sarabi; Mercer plays a giraffe), they have both been with the show for over five years. Here they discuss the euphoria of being cast in the mega hit, backstage life at the Minskoff, and fitness.
When was the last time you saw The Lion King, Rushers? Were you moved by its visuals? Do you find it interesting that this ensemble is arguably the prime aspect of this show? Leave your thoughts in the comments, and be sure to look for Part 2 next week.
In this second part of Ensemble Watch, Jeremy Woodard and Andre Ward of the Rock of Ages ensemble give details on how they stay rocker-fit for the show, the pressure’s of on-stage physique, and what rehearsals are like during a long run of a production.
Were you surprised that Andre and Jeremy don’t have to work harder to stay in shape for the show? What did you think about their views on pressure to stay fit for Rock of Ages? Are you surprised about all the rehearsal that’s still required of them?
Andre Ward and Jeremy Woodard—the guy rockers in the ensemble of Rock of Ages—talk about backstage life at the Brooks Atkinson, knee-bleeding audition tales, and bonding through cable TV in the latest edition of Ensemble Watch.
Have you caught Andre and Jeremy in Rock of Ages, Rushers? Or seen Jeremy go on as Stacee Jaxx? Were you surprised that neither of these guys thought they were cut out for the 80s rock show? And what’s up with them having to pay for cable in their dressing room? Leave your thoughts and questions in the comments, and don’t forget to check back early next week for part 2 of Ensemble Watch: Rock of Ages!
In this second part of Ensemble Watch, Melissa Rae Mahon and James T. Lane of Chicago discuss stunt casting, learning numerous versions of choreography for numbers, and perform their favorite dance steps from the show.
Did what Melissa and James said about knowing numerous versions of musical numbers surprise you, Rushers? How do you feel about some choreography being “watered down” for certain stars?
Kicking off Ensemble Watch, the series that highlights ensemble actors in Broadway’s hottest companies, Melissa Rae Mahon and James T. Lane dish on life in the classic musical Chicago and how they stay fit for those revealing costumes.
A sneak peak at Part 2.
Rushers, have you seen Melissa open Chicago? Did you catch James when he was in A Chorus Line? Are you surprised that these two didn’t describe a rigorous workout routine for the show? Leave it in the comments! Be sure to check back at Stage Rush for Part 2 of my interview with Melissa and James!