Skip to main content Skip to footer site map
Interview: Idina Menzel Reflects on Her Career In New Documentary WHICH WAY TO THE STAGE?

Interview: Idina Menzel Reflects on Her Career In New Documentary WHICH WAY TO THE STAGE?

Idina Menzel: Which Way to the Stage? premieres December 9 on Disney+.

From her iconic roles on Broadway in "Rent" and "Wicked" to voicing the legendary character of Elsa in Disney's "Frozen," Idina Menzel has done it all. However, her new documentary follows her as she's finally fulfilling a lifelong dream: headlining a concert at Madison Square Garden in her hometown of New York City.

"Idina Menzel: Which Way to the Stage?" follows Menzel on a national tour over the course of 16 shows as she juggles the challenges of being a working mom with a grueling travel schedule, all while preparing finally to realize her dream.

Directed by Anne McCabe, the documentary features footage of Menzel onstage in Wicked and Rent, alongside interviews with her family, friends, co-stars, and creative collaborators. The film also tells the story of her personal experience with in vitro fertilization.

BroadwayWorld caught up with Menzel at the premiere of the documentary in New York City. Keep reading to see which Broadway role she was most excited to revisit in the film, what she learned about herself through the film, and more.

Plus, check out a new clip from the documentary, in which Menzel looks back on creating the role of Maureen in Rent, cut in with footage of her singing "Take Me Or Leave Me" at her concert.


How are you feeling now that everyone's about to see the documentary?

Oh, a little nervous. It's one thing to watch a movie that you're in as an actor. It's another thing to watch it when it's just you bare bones there. But I have my whole family and friends and all the musicians are here and so it's just cool.

In the documentary, we're gonna take a look back at some of your iconic Broadway roles. Which one were you most excited to sort of take a look back on and re-examine?

They all are sort of with me all the time. I feel like they're sort of just chicken or the egg, they've defined me, I've defined them. It's fun to look at the Rent stuff just because it's the furthest away and I just see myself being so young and I would say usually when you're young you say you don't know what's ahead of you. But back then we were really aware of how important it was to take in the moment and that we were on the cusp of something and that we had a responsibility to Jonathan Larson to really make sure that we kept a good head on our shoulders and we were grounded and that we just made sure we communicated his message. So I think that that precedent was set back then and I hope that I've kept it and that it remains till this day.

Looking back, what did you learn about yourself while you make this documentary?

Good question. I learned that I can multi-task pretty well. That I know that I may not feel like I put on a perfect show, but as long as I stay true to myself and authentic, that audiences will still feel something from me. So if I'm with my son or I'm taking a flight back in the middle of the night so I can get back to the show or I'm feeling under the weather, that as long as I just kind of stand up there and I'm authentic, that that's the best show I give, not because I'm trying to hit a note and hold a long note for days.


Watch a clip of Menzel looking back on her time in Rent in the documentary here:

Photo by Eric Maldin/Walkman Productions Inc.


BroadwayWorld Shop
Shop BroadwayWorld

Shop this season's new musicals! Get dressed up for a night at the theatre, or just a night at home, with merch from some of Broadway's biggest hits including SOME LIKE IT HOT, KIMBERLY AKIMBO, and more!

Start Shopping



Related Stories
Video: Idina Menzel Breaks Down Let It Go From FROZEN With Chris Wallace Photo
This week on Who’s Talking to Chris Wallace?, singer Idina Menzel joins CNN Anchor Chris Wallace to discuss her best-known work as the voice of Elsa in Frozen, her career on stage and screen and a possible return to Broadway. Watch a video clip from the upcoming episode now!

Review Roundup: Idina Menzels Documentary Comes to Disney+ Photo
In “Idina Menzel: Which Way to the Stage?,” filmmaker Anne McCabe follows Menzel on a national tour over the course of 16 shows as she juggles the challenges of being a working mom with a grueling travel schedule, all while preparing finally to realize her dream. Check out what critics thought of the documentary in the first reviews now!

VIDEO: Idina Menzel Teases Return to Broadway on E! NEWS Photo
During a recent interview on E! News, Idina Menzel teased her return to Broadway in an original musical. Menzel also discussed a possible Rent revival, documenting her Madison Square Garden debut for her upcoming Disney+ documentary film, and more. Watch the interview video now!

VIDEO: Idina Menzel Reveals How RENT Inspired Her New Documentary Photo
Idina Menzel appeared on CBS Mornings to promote her new documentary, Idina Menzel: Which Way to the Stage? Menzel described what inspired her document the experience of playing at Madison Square Garden, calling back to a lesson she learned while starring in Rent. Watch the new video interview now!


From This Author - Michael Major


Hamish Hawk Releases New Album 'Angel Numbers'Hamish Hawk Releases New Album 'Angel Numbers'
February 3, 2023

Each track on Angel Numbers feels like its own world. There are allusions to Leonard Cohen, Karen Carpenter, David Hockney, Dylan Thomas and Britt Ekland and that’s just on the first song, the gloriously panoramic “Once Upon An Acid Glance.” On “Elvis Lookalike Shadows,”  listeners are granted a visitation from Presley in his ’68 Comeback special.

The War & Treaty Announce New Album 'Lover's Game'The War & Treaty Announce New Album 'Lover's Game'
February 3, 2023

The 10-song collection produced by Dave Cobb, marks their first major-label release under Mercury Nashville as it finds Michael Trotter Jr. and Tanya Trotter offering a unique perspective on shifting cultural and musical tides while pulling back the layers of a maturing relationship. Plus, check out upcoming tour dates!

Mark Erelli's Releases New LP 'Lay Your Darkness Down'Mark Erelli's Releases New LP 'Lay Your Darkness Down'
February 3, 2023

Acclaimed singer-songwriter Mark Erelli has released his new album, Lay Your Darkness Down, via Soundly Music. Erelli created the powerful LP in the wake of being diagnosed with Retinitis Pigmentosa (“RP”) – a devastating, degenerative eye disease that leads to blindness. Plus, check out upcoming tour dates!

Paul Shaffer and the World's Most Dangerous Band Return to THE TONIGHT SHOW TonightPaul Shaffer and the World's Most Dangerous Band Return to THE TONIGHT SHOW Tonight
February 3, 2023

Paul Shaffer, former “Late Night” bandleader and his longtime backing band are returning to 30 Rock to sub in for The Roots. The occasion marks Shaffer’s return to late night after serving as bandleader for David Letterman for over 30 years. Kit Harington and Tyler James Williams will also appear during tonight’s episode.      

Rob49 Drops Off New Single '4 God II'Rob49 Drops Off New Single '4 God II'
February 3, 2023

Rob49, just dropped his latest street anthem, “4 God II”. This single, produced by Schife, Rico on the Keys and Tupun, is the first of the year, following his highly successful “Welcome to Vulture Island” album released in 2022. The video, directed by Gerard Victor, shows the Vulture Island star bossed up and bounced back.