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BWW Interview: Bryan Hindle of JERSEY BOYS on His Role With The Iconic Show, on Tour and on Sea.


Jersey Boys

They were just four guys from Jersey, until they sang their very first note. They had a sound nobody had ever heard... and the radio just couldn't get enough of. But while their harmonies were perfect on stage, off stage it was a very different story-a story that has made them an international sensation all over again. Go behind the music and inside the story of Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons in the Tony Award -winning true-life musical phenomenon, Jersey Boys. From the streets of New Jersey to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, this is the musical that's just too good to be true. The premiere engagement of Jersey Boys in Grand Rapids in 2013 was seen by over 15,000 theatregoers in our city at DeVos Performance Hall. Broadway World Detroit recently talked to former Jersey Boy Actor and choreographer about His role with the production not only on the Canadian tour, and North American tour as well as currently on the Norwegian Cruise Line ship. This is what he had to say, about life on the road with Jersey Boys:

Broadway World Detroit: Can you give our readers a brief background of yourself and then your theatre career?

Bryan Hindle: Canadian-born, I started my career in Toronto after attending Wexford School For the Arts, where I received a majority of my training. While in college I was offered a professional contract with CanStage for their production of Hair. I was pretty excited because I had a long-running obsession with the music in that show, and was honored to work with the original lyric and book writer, James Rado. Soon after, I booked a gig dancing for Nelly Furtado in Mexico, then the US, Canada, and India. From there, I did a series of Broadway-level shows with Canada's most prominent producer, Mirvish Productions in Toronto: the Canadian premiere companies of War Horse and We Will Rock You, and the North American premiere of Dirty Dancing. Over the years, I've also worked in Film and TV: Hairspray (2007) and TV's L.A. Complex and Road Scholars. And I even make a small appearance in the Jersey Boys commercials, the new ad campaign for a show that I've worked on for nearly 11 years.

BWW Detroit- You mentioned touring with Nelly, how did you get involved on her tour?

Bryan Hindle- I was one of four dancers hired to perform with Nelly at the MTV Latinoamérica Awards in Mexico City. I thought that perhaps it was a one-time contract, but that led to an offer to tour the major cities of the US, then perform at the Grey Cup halftime show in Canada, and finally at NOKIA's New Year's Eve event in Mumbai, India. It was always a surprise on that tour when another artist would show up to perform with us, like when Justin Timberlake appeared in our dressing room to introduce himself and suggest that we all perform "Sexy Back." We danced with Ludacris, The Pussy Cat Dolls, Shakira, Fall Out Boy, Robbie Williams and dozens of others that I can't recall at the moment. Needless to say, it was pretty thrilling.

BWW Detroit- What was your role in film version of Hairspray?

Bryan Hindle- It was a small feature, a very small one. I danced as one of Link Larkin's (Zac Efron) back-up vocalists for a song that was original to the film adaptation of the Broadway musical, "Ladies Choice." The movie was directed by Adam Shankman and produced by Ingenious Media and Zadan/Meron Productions. I got to work in a rehearsal room with Zac on his birthday and then on-set with a number of very talented Canadian dancers. It was a lot of fun, and a high-energy show!

BWW Detroit- How did you prepare for your role for Jersey Boys, not only as an actor, but as a Associate Choreographer as well?

Bryan Hindle- I started performing Jersey Boys 11 years ago in Toronto where I played Joe Pesci; yeah- that Joe Pesci. I remember my audition pretty vividly, actually. The Broadway Director, Des McAnuff laughed at my interpretation of the role and complimented me on my performance. Those rooms are often so cold. That gave me confidence to go into the dance and music calls remembering the best audition advice I've ever gotten, which is to enjoy myself. It's often not the best or most technical dancers in the room that are hired, but the ones that are having the most fun, the ones you want to work with. I think that energy translates well to stage. While helping cast for the Norwegian Cruise Line and US national tour versions of the show, I definitely find myself focusing on the people in the room who are living it up. Learn what you're being taught, of course, take the notes and pay attention to the details, but enjoy yourself. It's not a test of memorization. If you make a mistake, it's how you handle that mistake. I prepared for performing in Jersey Boys by enjoying my day and ramping up to bring some joy to my performances.

As for my work setting Sergio Trujillo's Broadway choreography on the Norwegian production of Jersey Boys, I count myself lucky for having performed in the show, having put new actors into each role, and for having great respect for the show- it's just so well built and written. I've looked at Jersey Boys from a number of angles, and that insight is invaluable when I'm working to develop something fresh and exciting with actors. I've also learned a great deal from a man I consider to be a mentor, Danny Austin. Danny was the Associate Choreographer for Hairspray for a number of years on Broadway and Internationally and then for Jersey Boys. He has traveled the world with this show, mounting multiple companies, and has helped me develop my career in the United States. It's inspiring to see him work with actors. He's got a wicked sense of humor and an unmatched energy that motivates the whole room to come up to his level. I've learned from him how to transform a rehearsal room into a space where actors want to take their jobs very seriously, while also bringing joy and light to their work.

BWW Detroit- What makes the national tour of Jersey Boys special when compared to the Broadway version, or cruise ship version?

Bryan Hindle- While the show is on its surface about the rise to fame of the Four Seasons, it is at its core about the sacrifices these men had to make in their personal lives in order to achieve the level of success that they did. There's a focus on touring the world to promote your art that I think any traveling performer can connect with. In one of my favorite moments in the show, Frankie Valli and Bob Gaudio are sitting in a diner - somewhere - and Frankie says, "I wake up in the middle of the night, I don't know where I am. I think, what the hell happened? What's gonna happen?" Being on the road for long stretches of time, living in hotels, being away from your family and life-long friends can be really tough. I recently discussed in an interview for Dobbernation Loves the idea of "home" and how touring can often lead to feeling unsettled. dobbernationloves I think what makes the touring companies so special is a deep and intimate understanding of the subject matter, and that makes for a pretty honest performance.

BWW Detroit- What was your favorite song when you were in the show?

Bryan Hindle- That's a tough question. I think most people go to the show thinking they might know only a few Four Seasons' songs. And then as the show goes on, they realize that they know dozens. It's hit after hit and you can actually see audiences light up with acknowledgment. While a number of them get stuck in my head, and I leave the theatre singing "Who Loves You" or "Can't Take My Eyes Off You," I'd have to say that "Beggin'" is my personal favorite. It is in part the groove of the song that I like, but the reason it sticks out for me is its role in the show. There is a great deal of conflict unfolding at that point in the story, and this song is being performed over a slick transition that leads to an intense confrontation. There's some killer unspoken angst expressed in the lyrics, staging, and choreography of this number. It's electrifying!

BWW Detroit- What did you enjoy most about coming to Grand Rapids and the Devos Performance Hall on your tour, and what do you think the cast will enjoy about the city?

Bryan Hindle- Although I won't be coming back to Grand Rapids with the current tour, I'm excited for that cast to experience the city itself. Often when you're on tour, you find yourself resting in your hotel and preparing for the show, but I remember doing a lot of that prep walking around and exploring. I loved the Grand River itself and, while it was nearly 5 years ago now, I remember the friendly people. We had a receptive and vocal audience at the Devos Performance Hall, and I imagine those theatre-goers will love it just as much this time around. That's what this cast has to look forward to.

Jersey Boys will be arriving for it's limited 5 night engagement November 30- December 2 at DeVos Performance Hall. For more information and tickets visit:

Connect with Bryan Hindle: and

Connect with Jersey Boys on tour:,,, and

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