Photo Exclusive: ROCK OF AGES¬' Dan Domenech¬'s Farewell Party
New York, March 31, 2012 – Rock of Ages (ROA) on Broadway wanted him to stay for another six months. In spite of that, after more than 500 shows, which began in his swing job at ROA's first national tour two years ago and ended up in his last performance as the musical's male romantic lead, Drew, on Broadway last Sunday, Dan Domenech has opted for some time off instead. BroadwayWorld.com (BWW) brings you exclusive photos of Domenech's farewell party, in which ROA cast members, some theater friends, and family members joined the intimate gathering, recently held at Pazza Notte Restaurant & Lounge on Avenue of Americas.
"It feels very surreal, but it's exciting. Like anything else in life, you've got to close doors, and let other doors open. ROA's going to live on. It's an amazing musical; and a huge movie is coming out with one of the biggest action stars in Hollywood. I couldn't have been more proud of the team – the cast and the crew. Justin Sargent is going to come in, and take over Drew. He's going to be amazing," Domenech told BWW. "Justin was a vacation swing. So when anyone went on vacation or on sick leave, he would get in because we needed a certain number of people in the cast to cover different roles. He's been with ROA longer than I have. It's been a long time coming; no one deserves playing Drew more than he does," he added.
A native Long Islander, Domenech started playing full time the role of Drew – originated on Broadway by American Idol finalist Constantine Maroulis – when ROA reopened on the Great White Way at the Helen Hayes Theatre in March last year. The Tony-nominated musical borrows classic rock hits from the '80s, and follows the standard romantic plot line of boy (Drew) meets girl (Sherrie). However, the two young lovers are abruptly separated because of their Hollywood dreams.
Domenech has had the opportunity to perform with at least two actresses who played Drew's love interest, Sherrie: Rebecca Faulkenberry (who is now playing the part of Mary Jane Watson in Spider-man: Turn Off the Dark) and Emily Padgett (Legally Blonde, Grease). "Emily was the first Sherrie that I ever saw. I fell in love with the show. And I remember thinking that someday, I might be able to perform with her. It was really exciting to fulfill a thought in your mind of getting to sing with somebody on stage. All the Sherries that I ever got to sing with have been great – all the main girls, all the understudies, they're all super talented. The show gives them the opportunity to show what they're made of," he said.
So what is coming up next for the good-looking, over six-feet-tall Broadway star?
"I'd sleep!" Domenech breathed a sigh of relief. "I'm going to take some time off. It's been more than 500 shows between the tour and here. ROA is two and a half hours long. But most of my days have been used to prepare for every night's performance because I should stay healthy and all. I'll spend some more time with my friends and family because I haven't done that a lot this year."
"By the way, I want to thank ROA fans for all the support. It's been an amazing year. I'm going to miss the show. I'm not done. I'm home. Broadway is home for me. I'm looking forward to doing more projects, and creating a show of my own," he said.
Photos by Oliver Oliveros
Dan Domenech with dad and mom