BWW Interviews: Caroline Bowman, Spamalot¬'s Lady of the Lake at Atlanta¬'s Fox Theatre, June 3 - 5.
The Knights who say Ni, Tim the Shrubber, the Holy Hand Granade, and a Killer Rabbit. If these mean anything to you then you are already familiar with the hit cult movie Monty Python and the Holy Grail. But even if you aren't familiar with the movie, but love funny, exciting and colorful musical theatre you will soon have the chance to find out more when Theater of the Stars presents Spamalot at the Fabulous Fox Theatre. On June 3, for just 5 performances only, Atlanta audiences will have the chance to go on their own irreverent quest with King Arthur and his Knights and possibly even find their own grail. I caught up with Caroline Bowman who plays the Lady of the Lake.
BWW: Caroline, thanks so much for taking the time to talk with me today. I am excited to hear about the show and I know our readers will be too. We are really looking forward to Spamalot in Atlanta!
Caroline Bowman:You are so welcome!
Let's start by having you tell us a little bit about yourself and your career. Specifically, how did you get into the theatre business??
Well, I started theatre really young. My mom is an actor and she did a lot of community theatre growing up so I kind of got the theatre bug because of her. I took dance classes and voice lessons growing up and then I went to Penn State University for Musical Theatre. Then, between my junior and senior year, I auditioned for Fame: The Musical which was a China tour with Phoenix. I had decided that summer I would just go and audition for everything I was right for, and so I went to New York and only ended up auditioning for two things and I got both of them! I didn't actually think I would get them both, so I had to work things out with school. At first I didn't think I would be able to do it, but my Mom, who is the most supportive and encouraging person in the world, she said I think you can work it out, you should try. So, I ended up somehow working it out through a lot of negotiation, went on tour with Fame, came back and graduated on time. I did Grease with the same company, then Spamalot, and the rest is history!
So, before you got involved with Spamalot were you a fan of Monty Python and/or the show?
Really it was very new to me. I had never seen it before on stage. I had seen a few Monty Python things and part of the Holy Grail movie, and was a fan of Sara Ramirez, and knew of the show, obviously, but I had never seen it. I had to do a lot of research to figure out what this show is all about, and after close to ten months on tour I am still working on it!!
And with the show being based on a very popular cult movie, do you find that creates challenges with being "new"and unique or is it nice to have a fan base to some extent already?
Well, it is really, really amazing, and we know it immediately when we have a bunch of Month Python fans in the audience. We do have a lot of the cult followers who come to the show. It's amazing, because the second the show starts and King Arthur comes out with the coconuts and they go wild, we know then that it is going to be a great show. The challenge with that, mainly for the other actors, is the fact that since we do scenes straight out of the movie, it can be hard to make it their own but stay true to the Monty Python characters that everybody knows and loves. My character is not in the movie, just mentioned, so I have the freedom to go wherever I want with the character. It is a blessing and a challenge for me.