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Posts tagged ‘Matt Leisy’


Stage Rush TV: Episode 72

Talking points:

What do you think, Rushers? Did this week’s Bryant Park concert rock your world with the sexy people that performed? What is your favorite role of Chester Gregory’s to date? Have you ever attended the 24-hour musicals event? Leave your thoughts in the comments below, and don’t forget to enter our Follies ticket giveaway for a chance to win one of two pairs of tickets to the show!

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Broadway in Bryant Park recap: ‘Anything Goes’ and ‘The Phantom of the Opera’

The oldie musicals came to Broadway in Bryant Park this week to show the newbies who’s boss. The lively casts of The Phantom of the Opera, The Fantasticks, Hair, and Anything Goes performed their classic, well-trodden material with fresh enthusiasm.

At first, I wasn’t so sure about the Phantom set. Kyle Barisich and Marni Raab sang a sweet “All I Ask of You,” but the acting was so out of context on the Bryant Park stage that I had trouble holding back a few snide laughs. I shut up when Hugh Panaro took the stage for “Music of the Night.” The Broadway A-lister and long-time Phantom sang the famous number with remarkable control, and his power notes filled the park effortlessly.

VIDEO: Hugh Panaro sings “Music of the Night” from The Phantom of the Opera

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Stage Rush TV: Episode 44

Editor’s note: Stage Rush will be on vacation over the holidays; coverage will resume on January 3.

Talking points:

(Using an iPhone or iPad? Watch on YouTube)

What do you think, Rushers? Have you seen The Fantasticks? Have you caught Matt Leisy’s performance? Did you enjoy Matt’s Broadway Mad Libs? Thank you for a fantastic year, Rushers! Have a wonderful holiday and New Year. Stage Rush will return on January 3 with an interview with Hunter Ryan Herdlicka from A Little Night Music, then catch SRTV on January 7. Leave your thoughts in the comments below!

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‘The Fantasticks’’s Matt Leisy is silent no longer

The Fantasticks is giving Matt Leisy his voice, literally and figuratively. After playing the Mute (yes, a non-speaking role) for a year and understudying the young lover Matt, Leisy was promoted full-time to the role, which includes the ballad “Soon It’s Gonna Rain,” on December 6. The Northwestern University graduate who split his childhood between England and Kansas sat down with Stage Rush to discuss understudying, role ownership, and shielding eyes from glitter.

Catch Matt Leisy’s appearance on Stage Rush TV this Friday!

You’ve achieved what so many understudies hope for—you took over the role you were covering. How did you feel when you were told?
I was definitely very excited and relieved as well. I was wondering if it was going to happen. When I was offered the role of the Mute and the understudy to Matt in the show, it was kind of inferred that if an opportunity arises, they’d like me to play the part. So I knew it was a possibility. The fact that the opportunity came was a big relief.

What did it feel like in your first official week in the role?
I’ve had the opportunity to go on a lot as an understudy. Kind of unusually a lot. A while ago, I was able to let go and realize it’s not about just making your mark and singing the right notes. I was able to play then, but this has been a great time to play on stage with the other actors and figure out what my Matt is about. Each show I’ve been trying new things.

Do you feel freer to try new things, now that the role is yours?
I was more tentative. Now there’s more sense of ownership and an extra sense of confidence, because this is my part. Read more »