BWW Interviews: Just in Time for the Opening of The Wedding Singer, TRAVIS KENDRICK's Friday Five

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Inspired by BroadwayWorld.com's Friday Six, welcome to Nashville.BroadwayWorld.com's latest installment of The Friday Five: five questions designed to help you learn more about the talented people you'll find onstage throughout the Volunteer state.

Today, the spotlight falls upon Travis Kendrick, who continues his run as one of the go-to guys at Clarksville's Roxy Regional Theatre in The Wedding Singer, opening tonight; coming up for Travis is the role of Chachi in Happy Days, which will close the company's 2011-2012 season. Not only an actor, Travis is also a certified yoga instructor, teaching classes around Clarksville and at the Roxy, and he's choreographer of note, having choreographed Just Another High School Musical at Clarksville's Northeast High School, Gallantry for Austin Peay State University Opera and he'll be doing a number for The Roxy's 101 Dalmatians the Musical later this year.

Find out what makes the peripatetic Travis Kendrick tick-what keeps him going-in today's installment of The Friday Five and then go to Clarksville and see him among the 1980s devotees in The Wedding Singer at The Roxy Regional Theatre.

What was your first "live onstage" taste of theater? My first "Live onstage" taste of theatre was seeing a production of Cinderella that my art teacher was in, and then auditioning for that theatre's production of Oliver, and singing "Santa Fe" from Newsies. (And now, it's a hit Broadway musical!)

What is your favorite pre-show ritual? Before going on stage, I love to stretch and be really physically warm. I find it helps warm up my voice as well.  I am an avid yoga practitioner (and yoga instructor), and love doing yoga before going onstage.

What's your most memorable "the show must go on" moment? The show must go on-certainly true at the Roxy. I suppose I'm somewhat of the Roxy's unofficial understudy.  I was leaving the Roxy after my first contract- literally in the car driving through New Jersey on my way back to New York City-when I got a call from the artistic eirector, John McDonald, asking if I could come back to take over an actor's role in Around The World In 80 Days. I came back, and went straight in to their tech rehearsal-reading the script for the first time, in costume, as I write my blocking, and having to use a French dialect to boot! I filled in for the actor playing Huck in Big River last season with three hours' notice. And I even filled in for the Tina Turner role in Beehive (an all-girl 60's musical revue) for the first week of rehearsals before the replacement actress got there. Sometimes having to be that present and having to think on your feet is a great acting challenge and can be a lot of fun!

What's your dream role? I have so many! One of them is to play Arpad in She Loves Me (not that many places do it). Hmm...Toby in Sweeney Todd, Finch in How To Succeed..., Moritz in Spring Awakening and still have yet to play Jack in Into The Woods.

Who's your theatrical crush? Hugh Jackman. Without a doubt.

 

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Jeffrey Ellis Jeffrey Ellis is a Nashville-based writer, editor and critic, who's been covering the performing arts in Tennessee for more than 25 years. He is the recipient of the Tennessee Theatre Association's Distinguished Service Award for his coverage of theatre in the Volunteer State and was the founding editor/publisher of Stages, the Tennessee Onstage Monthly. He is a past fellow of the National Critics Institute at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre Center and is the founder/executive producer of The First Night Honors, held during Labor Day Weekend, which honor oustanding theater artists in Tennessee in recognition of their lifetime achievements and includes The First Night Star Awards and the Most Promising Actors. Midwinter's First Night, held the first Sunday in January after New Year's Day, honors outstanding productions and performances throughout the state. Further, Ellis directed the Nashville premiere of La Cage Aux Folles, The Last Night of Ballyhoo and An American Daughter, as well as award-winning productions of Damn Yankees, Company, Gypsy and The Rocky Horror Show, with Ellis honored by The Tennessean as best director of a musical for both Company and Rocky Horror.


 
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