THE FRIDAY SIX: Q&As with Your Favorite Broadway Stars- BEAUTIFUL's Anika Larsen
Welcome to THE FRIDAY SIX: Q&As with your favorite Broadway stars. Want to know what hooked them to a career in the theater? Their dream roles? Their Broadway crushes? Read on!
What is the first Broadway show you ever saw?
The first Broadway show I ever saw was PETER PAN, starring Sandy Duncan, when I was 5. I can still picture her flying out over the audience. My parents took me and the 6 Brothers and Sisters I had at the time (eventually I had 9) from our home in Cambridge, MA down for a trip to NYC. The show is the only part of the trip I remember. I hope they went through group sales.
What is your most unique pre-show ritual?
I'm not superstitious at all, so I'm not one for rituals. Does wig prep count? How about resenting liquid eyeliner every time I put it on for the show? I do go into the Beautiful stage management office next door to my dressing room for mini Reese's Peanut Butter Cups before pretty much every show, but I don't think that's so much ritual as my inability to exert self-control in the face of the marriage of peanut butter and chocolate.
What is your most memorable "the show must go on" moment?
I guess that might be when I was a swing on the national tour of RENT, covering Maureen and all three of the ensemble women. One night there were so many people out that I had to go on for 2 of the 3 female ensemble tracks at once. I had been swinging the show for over a year, so it wasn't too terrifying, about on par with a roller coaster ride. I was the only blonde girl in the show at the time, but I thought the audience must have left thinking there were at least 4 of us, because I was every other junkie, half of the characters' moms, various and sundry East Village bohemians, like 3 cops, and the "Seasons of Love" soloist.
What is the one role you want to play before you die?
I have never been in a Sondheim show, and that is a real regret for me. I would love to play any of his women, they're all so dynamic and rich. Dot in SUNDAY IN THE PARK WITH GEORGE, any of the women in INTO THE WOODS or A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC, the list goes on. Right now I'm performing at the Stephen Sondheim Theater, which I'm choosing to take as a good omen and not a cosmic tease.
Who is your Broadway crush?
My biggest Broadway crush of all time was Michael Ball, the original Marius in LES MISERABLES. In high school, I hearted him so hard! I managed to finagle a trip down to NYC with a friend and her mom to see him in ASPECTS OF LOVE. Before the show started they made an announcement that his understudy would be going on. I wept silently through all of Act I. Which is why I don't call out sick if there is any way I can possibly get myself through a show.
Where can people stalk you online?