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Erika Amato

 
Date Of Birth:
December 07 (2022)
Birth Place:
Plainfield, New Jersey, USA
Bio:
Erika was born in Plainfield, NJ and grew up in the neighboring town of Mountainside. She spent her entire elementary and secondary academic career at the highly competitive Kent Place School, an all-girls' prep school in Summit NJ, where she discovered her love for acting and music at a very early ... (read complete bio)
 
Date of Birth: December 07

Birth Place: Plainfield, New Jersey, USA

Bio:
Erika was born in Plainfield, NJ and grew up in the neighboring town of Mountainside. She spent her entire elementary and secondary academic career at the highly competitive Kent Place School, an all-girls' prep school in Summit NJ, where she discovered her love for acting and music at a very early ... (read complete bio)

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Erika Amato Biography

Erika was born in Plainfield, NJ and grew up in the neighboring town of Mountainside. She spent her entire elementary and secondary academic career at the highly competitive Kent Place School, an all-girls' prep school in Summit NJ, where she discovered her love for acting and music at a very early age.

Although she always knew she wanted to be an actress/singer, Erika's career path has turned out to be on the circuitous side.

After graduating from Vassar College with both General Honors and Honors in Drama, she moved to Los Angeles in order to pursue a career in television and film. She was lucky enough to land an agent within a month, and shortly thereafter she booked a role on QUANTUM LEAP. Things were going well, but then her agent abruptly quit the business, leaving her to start over. Right around this time, she joined a male-fronted rock band called Heat Your Shack as a back-up singer with occasional lead vocals. After a matter of months, that band dissolved and became a new band - Velvet Chain - with Erika as the lead singer and co-composer. VC became hugely popular on the L.A. club scene, playing regularly at venues like The Key Club, The Troubadour, and House Of Blues. They were invited to perform on the cult-hit TV show, BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER - both on screen in the episode "Never Kill A Boy On The First Date" and on the subsequent Soundtrack Album - which exposed them to both a national and international audience. This led to their being signed with an indie label and going on a very successful U.S. tour, in addition to being used in many more TV programs and films, including HBO's SEX AND THE CITY, ABC's BIG SHOTS, MTV's LIVE THROUGH THIS and ROAD RULES and the trailer for Touchstone Pictures' CON AIR.

Meanwhile, Erika was still auditioning for TV, commercial, and film roles (without benefit of an agent) and was able to continue to book work, but it just wasn't enough. So, in addition to playing with the band and shooting the occasional indie film, she was working in retail to help pay the rent.

Then, on 9/11/01, Erika had an epiphany: life was simply too short to wait around, hoping for the phone to ring with an audition, all the while folding sweaters and catering to Botoxed ladies with tiny dogs in their purses. She knew musical theatre would be a good fit for her, plus theatre uses a much more "democratic" casting process than TV or film, with many productions holding "open" auditions. So, she went out that very weekend, bought a copy of the casting publication BACKSTAGE, and decided to audition for something.

The rest, as they say, is history. :-)

Erika has been blessed to be a steadily working actress since making that decision back in L.A. in 2001, and is now thriving in the highly competitive NY theatre scene. She is currently playing "Miss Wilde" in the First National Tour of FLASHDANCE, directed and choreographed by Tony-award winner, Sergio Trujillo.

Her NY theatrical debut as "Hesione" in TRIUMPH OF LOVE at the Astoria Performing Arts Center in spring of 2008 was met with great critical acclaim, as was her Off-Broadway debut performance as "Berta" in the World Premiere musical SIGNS OF LIFE at the Marjorie S. Deane Little Theatre (Feb 16 - Mar 21, 2010). Also in NY, she had the pleasure of creating the role of "Cleopatra" in the Off-Broadway musical comedy THE SPHINX WINX, at the Beckett Theatre on Theatre Row (May 3 - July 24, 2011), as well as the role of "Ninetta Eames" in JACK LONDON - SEX, LOVE, AND REVOLUTION at the NY Fringe Festival (Aug 15 - 25, 2013).

Of all her recent credits, by far the most technically challenging was her role as the Voice of the "Clinic Director/Bad Fairy" in the World Premiere of the American Sign Language musical SLEEPING BEAUTY WAKES, directed by Jeff Calhoun at the Kirk Douglas Theatre in Culver City, CA. Not only did she provide a voice for the wonderful deaf actress Deanne Bray in the show, but she also had to learn ASL in order to be able to sign her own role as the "Night Terror Patient/Royal Servant." Erika's work was recognized with both an Ovation Award nomination (Best Featured Actress in a Musical) and a Garland Award Honorable Mention. SLEEPING BEAUTY WAKES was a co-production of Center Theatre Group and Deaf West Theatre, and featured an extremely talented cast of both deaf and hearing actors.

Some of Erika's other favorite credits include: "Velma Von Tussle" in HAIRSPRAY (Tuacahn), "Fairy Godmother" in RODGERS & HAMMERSTEIN'S CINDERELLA (Fireside Theatre), "Bo Peep" in TOY STORY - THE MUSICAL (Disney Workshop),"Elsa Schraeder" in THE SOUND OF MUSIC (Fireside Theatre), "Betty Haynes" in WHITE CHRISTMAS (Welk Resort Theatre of Escondido, CA), SUNSET BOULEVARD at the Hollywood Bowl (starring Betty Buckley and Len Cariou), "Reno Sweeney" in ANYTHING GOES (Candlelight Pavilion - Inland Theatre League Award nominee), "Dorothy Brock" in 42nd STREET (Welk Resort Theatre), the "Snow Queen" in the original musical, THE SNOW QUEEN (Disney Workshop - music by Alan Menken), "Cherry Jourdel" in PAINT YOUR WAGON (Geffen Playhouse), the "Evil Queen/Hag" in SNOW WHITE - AN ENCHANTING NEW MUSICAL (Disneyland Resort), "Hippolyte" in THE BUNGLER (West Coast Ensemble), "Wallis Simpson" in MADLY IN LOVE (Odyssey Theater), "Hodel" in FIDDLER ON THE ROOF (Starlight Musical Theatre), "Yvonne" in SUNDAY IN THE PARK WITH GEORGE (West Coast Ensemble - Ovation nominee for Best Musical), "Maria" in THE SOUND OF MUSIC (Saddleback CLO), and "Luisa" in NINE (Chance Theater - OCWeekly "Best Performance in a Musical" nominee, named one of the "Top 10 Best Performances of 2002" by the Orange County Register).

Television and Film credits include BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER, BRINGING UP JACK, VH-1's SPARKLE LOUNGE, QUANTUM LEAP, starring roles in the indie films FRIENDS AND STRANGERS, A COUPLE OF DAYS AND NIGHTS, and SMACK, and as a featured singing voice on PBS' DANGER RANGERS TV series and the Disney feature film, ENCHANTED.

For more info about Erika's work with VELVET CHAIN, please visit the band's official website: www.velvetchain.com.





Erika Amato News

Photos: AN AMERICAN IN PARIS Opens at The Argyle Theatre Photo Photos: AN AMERICAN IN PARIS Opens at The Argyle Theatre
by Genevieve Rafter Keddy - Sep 19, 2022

AN AMERICAN IN PARIS is the final show of the season for Long Island's largest year-round professional theatrical venue, The Argyle Theatre. Check out photos from opening night below!

The Argyle Theatre to Present AN AMERICAN IN PARIS Beginning in September Photo The Argyle Theatre to Present AN AMERICAN IN PARIS Beginning in September
by Chloe Rabinowitz - Sep 1, 2022

An American in Paris begins performances on September 15 in advance of its opening night on September 17 and will run through October 23, 2022 at The Argyle Theatre.

Boomerang Theatre Company to Return to Live, In-Person Performances with COMEDY OF ER Photo Boomerang Theatre Company to Return to Live, In-Person Performances with COMEDY OF ERRORS
by Chloe Rabinowitz - Sep 13, 2021

BOOMERANG THEATRE COMPANY has announced their triumphant return to live in-person theater with William Shakespeare’s COMEDY OF ERRORS, directed by Scott Ebersold. COMEDY OF ERRORS will play four performances only at The  Tea Room at The Prince George Hotel (15 East 27th Street, NYC).

Judy Garland and Bea Arthur Host JUST IN TIME FOR CHRISTMAS Benefit Photo Judy Garland and Bea Arthur Host JUST IN TIME FOR CHRISTMAS Benefit
by Stephi Wild - Dec 5, 2019

Joseph Macchia presents Just In Time For Christmas A Cabaret. Hosted by Peter Mac as Judy Garland and Dr. John Schaefer as Bea Arthur the evening will feature performances by Michael McAssey,Gary Lizardo, Tom Gamblin, Amanda Robles, Will Perez, Erika Amato,Caitlin McBride, Jae W Brown and Zach Balquin. Musical Direction by Yasuhiko Fukuoka

BWW Review: AN AMERICAN IN PARIS at Westchester Broadway Theatre Is the Champagne of  Photo BWW Review: AN AMERICAN IN PARIS at Westchester Broadway Theatre Is the Champagne of Jukebox Musicals
by Bruce Apar - Oct 27, 2019

The show's resplendent color palette, anchored by a stage floor covered in dappled brush strokes, pays homage to the French impressionist school of painting, notably that of Claude Monet. 

Erika Amato, Aaron Lee Battle & Meg Flather Join Cast Of ONE HEART ONE CURE Photo Erika Amato, Aaron Lee Battle & Meg Flather Join Cast Of ONE HEART ONE CURE
by Stephi Wild - Sep 30, 2019

Critically-acclaimed performers Erika Amato (Flashdance - The Musical), Aaron Lee Battle (Bistro Award), and Meg Flather (MAC and Bistro Awards) have been added to the starry lineup for producer Joseph Macchia's first annual ONE HEART ONE CURE CONCERT, hosted by Broadway's Doreen Montalvo (On Your Feet, In The Heights) at the Baruch Performing Arts Center on October 14th at 8pm.

Cast Announced for Upcoming Season at Tuacahn Center for the Arts Photo Cast Announced for Upcoming Season at Tuacahn Center for the Arts
by A.A. Cristi - Jul 26, 2018

 Tackling one of its biggest seasons to date, Tuacahn Center for the Arts in southern Utah is pleased to include several Broadway stars glittering among the cast of the regional premiere of Matilda the Musical, Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella and the first large-scale version of the Stephen Schwartz supervised production of Prince of Egypt.

Erika Amato, Francesco Anile, and More to Perform in 'Arts for Mexico and Puerto Rico Photo Erika Amato, Francesco Anile, and More to Perform in 'Arts for Mexico and Puerto Rico Benefit Gala Concert'
by Robert Diamond - Oct 7, 2017

In the wake of the recent devastation in both Mexico and Puerto Rico, a group of world-class artists along with Arts for Mexico & Puerto Rico, Songbirds of Peace (501c3), and the Symphony Orchestra of the Americas have teamed up to produce a Gala Concert in which 100% of the proceeds will be donated towards the recovery efforts in the two affected countries.

Doug DeVita's THE GRUESOMELY MERRY ADVENTURES OF NELL DASH Set for Hudson Guild Theatre
by BWW News Desk - Feb 28, 2017

THE GRUESOMELY MERRY ADVENTURES OF NELL DASH, AN IRREPRESSIBLY SENSIBLE CAPITALIST WITH A VENGEANCE is set for the Hudson Guild Theatre.

Fresh Fruit Festival to Salute 'NELL DASH' Playwright Doug DeVita
by BWW News Desk - Feb 27, 2017

The Fresh Fruit Festival, presented by All Out Arts, now in its 15th year celebrating the LGBTQ community's unique perspective, creativity and diversity, and to build links between the LGBTQ artistic communities on local and international levels, will host its annual Fresh Fruit Awards of Distinction at The Bowery Poetry Club on April 24 at 7:00 p.m.

Erika Amato Videos

STAGE TUBE: WBT's BACKWARDS IN HIGH HEELS
by Jeffrey Ellis - Aug 5, 2015

The journey from the 21st Century back to Hollywood's glamourous golden age is an inspiring one when your "tour guides" are the legendary Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire - portrayed by Darien Crago and Jeremy Benton in Westchester Broadway Theatre's production of Lynnette Barkley and Christopher McGovern's Backwards in High Heels: The Ginger Musical, running August 13-September 20.

STAGE TUBE: Sneak Peek - BROADWAY SINGS FOR PRIDE's UNITE, Set for NYC Gay Pride 2013
by Stage Tube - Jun 22, 2013

Broadway Sings for Pride will kick off NYC Gay Pride 2013 by celebrating with their third annual Gay Pride benefit concert. The special one-night benefit entitled ' Unite' with join forces with American Idol and Billboard recording artistic Kimberley Locke, American Idol and Rent star Anwar Robinson and over 20 members of the Broadway community. On June 20, Broadway Sings For Pride hosted a cocktail press preview, featuring songs from the upcoming program. Click below for a sneak peek at the show!