THE FRIDAY SIX: Q&As with Your Favorite Broadway Stars- WICKED's Michael Wartella!
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 PHANTOM. I was seven and I went with my grandparents. I remember loving the entire show, but the thing that really stuck out to me was that part in act two where 'Raul' jumps of the bridge and into a trap door in the fog. I remember freaking out because it was the coolest thing I had ever seen on stage. (I still think it's pretty cool, I'm impressed easily).
What is your most unique pre-show ritual?
I wish I could say that I have a whole routine where I warm up, meditate, go through some of my lines, pray to the gods of theater, stretch, and recite the actors vow, but these days you will probably just find me eating mac and cheese 10 minutes before the show. Also sometimes in between scenes.
What is your most memorable "the show must go on" moment?
One time when I was about 5 years old, I was playing 'Tiny Tim' in my hometown production of A CHRISTMAS CAROL, and I was running late for my entrance. As I ran to the stage, I tripped and smacked my face pretty bad on the concrete floor. I was bleeding all down my face and all over my costume, but I didn't tell anyone, I just silently walked to my spot in the dark in the wings. So know one knew until I went out onstage with my fellow actors and there faces turnEd White because Tiny Tim was covered in blood. But they gave me a little handkerchief and I finished the scene. Looking back I'm kind of surprised they let me finish instead of escorting me off stage, but they probably just froze and didn't know what to do.
What is the one role you want to play before you die?
I love by the way that you guys specifically say "the ONE role" and everybody gives you like 4 because they can't decide, and I am no different! So... 'Frankenfurter' in ROCKY HORROR. I would love to do some kind of rock and roll version of PETER PAN, where it's like PETER PAN meets SPRING AWAKENING, (someone should really do that by the way) and of course, 'the Phantom'... No seriously I'd love to, (I'm pretty weird).
Who is your Broadway crush?
Carolee Carmello, she can do no wrong... Also Terrance Mann. He is the Shiz. Jerry Orbach. Joe Mantello is pretty much a living genius. THE NORMAL HEART, (and especially his performance) was truly more than just a play it was an experience. Not to mention his directorial career. When I grow up I wanna be like Joe Mantello. In terms of a REAL "crush" I'm crushing' pretty hard on this new up and comer, Jillian Kates ; ) .
Where can people stalk you online?
I'd prefer no one "stalk" me, that sounds kinda creepy... But I do have a few silly videos on YouTube if you search my name. And I should really get a website that seems like a logical thing to do, so I guess look for that coming soon in, maybe, I don't know... 2015?