High School Drama: Hume-Fogg Academic High School's MICHAEL DUNAWAY
Michael Dunaway's senior year at Nashville's Hume-Fogg Academic High School's has indeed been a busy one for the young song-and-dance man who this week opens in his school's staging of Disney's Newsies, one of the most-often produced shows of the 2018-19 season. Playing the musical's iconic leading man Jack Kelly, Dunaway leads off his final year as HFA's leading man with one of the most coveted roles in contemporary musical theater.
Today, Dunaway talks with BroadwayWorld about his theater experience at HFA (he represented his classmates as a finalist for The Spotlight Awards, presented by Lipscomb Unviersity College of Entertainment and the Arts and the Tennessee Performing Arts Center, last spring), where's he's been a featured player in some of Daron Bruce and Lisa Forbis' most acclaimed productions of the past four years, while he recalls special moments that stand out in his memory and looks ahead to what the future holds for him after graduation.
Here's your chance to get to know Michael Dunaway in today's edition of High School Drama:
What's your theatrical goal in life? My theatrical goal in life is to continue performing in any way I can, whether it be in student run productions on my college campus, community theater groups, or professional theater companies.
What's your dream role? My dream role would be the role of Sweeney Todd. The sinister and darkness of the role, coupled with the eloquent dissonance of Sondheim's writing style makes that role one of my top choices for sure.
What onstage moment have you experienced that stands out in your mind? Throughout the years there have been moments when I've just taken a second to drink in my surroundings, and realize what I'm actually doing when I'm taking part in a show. Those moments take place on stage in the middle of a scene, backstage waiting for a cue, and even in the dressing rooms after a performance. But they make me realize how much I love doing what I'm doing, and how much I love the communities that the art of theater builds. I remember being onstage and staring at my fellow cast member, Zeth Dixon, as he sang of "seizing the day" and realizing, this is incredible. It was one of those magical moments and I couldn't help but smile. Luckily it fit the mood of the scene.
What show that you haven't yet seen would you most like to see? I would love to see In The Heights done live. I've loved that show for a long time now and it would be amazing to see how vibrant it could be, sitting in the audience.
What's next for you theater-wise? My next theatrical endeavor will be Hume-Fogg's production of Newsies, running from November 8-10, and then auditioning for HFA's spring production, which will be my final musical in high school. After that I plan on the continuation of my theater journey into college, whatever form it may take.
photos by Rick Malkin