BWW Q&A: Caroline Huerta of STRANGER SINGS! The Parody Musical at Straz Center for the Performing Arts

Now on stage through April 21st, 2024.

By: Apr. 15, 2024
BWW Q&A: Caroline Huerta of STRANGER SINGS! The Parody Musical at Straz Center for the Performing Arts
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We spoke to Caroliene Huerta on appearing in the regional premiere of STRANGER SINGS! The Parody Musical.  STRANGER SINGS! is a hilarious “upside down” take on the hit Netflix series - and all its campy 1980s glory.

Join Mike, Eleven, Lucas, Dustin and the whole Hawkins gang for a night of adventure, thrills, pubescent angst, heavy synth, poor parenting, convoluted love triangles, dancing monsters and maybe, just maybe ... justice for everyone’s favorite missing ginger, Barb Holland.

This production is built "in the round," providing a uniquely immersive experience with 360-degree seating and limited VIP bean bag seats inclusive of a themed party pack! With ‘80s arcades games in the lobby courtesy of Lowry Parcade, you don't need to search another dimension to have a nostalgic night of fun.

Caroline is a Tampa native and an original off-Broadway cast member of Stranger Sings! The Parody Musical. She was born and raised in Tampa and is a proud Berkeley Prep alum. Off-Broadway: Stranger Sings! The Parody Musical (Joyce/Will), Bubble Boy (Slim, NYC Premiere), Urinetown (Little Becky Two-Shoes), The Handmaid's Musical: A Dystopian Tale (Rita). Select Regional Theatre: Anastasia (Countess Lily, Regional Premiere), In The Heights (Daniela), West Side Story (Rosalia), Xanadu (Melpomene), Hairspray (Tammy), Kinky Boots (Swing), The Merchant of Venice (Jessica).

What was your initial reaction when you read the script for Stranger Sings! The Parody Musical for the first time?

My first reaction was, "This is HILARIOUS!". I remember that it took us much longer than expected to complete our first table read because we were all laughing so much! There was even a moment when I (quite literally) fell out of my chair laughing.

Can you share a bit about the plot of Stranger Sings?

Take a trip back to Hawkins, Indiana: 1983… when times were simpler, hair was bigger, and unsupervised children were getting snatched by interdimensional creatures. Our show is a hilarious ‘upside down’ take on the hit Netflix series - and all its campy 1980s glory. Join Mike, Eleven, Lucas, Dustin, and the whole Hawkins gang for a night of adventure, thrills, pubescent angst, heavy synth, poor parenting, convoluted love triangles, cheap effects, dancing monsters, and maybe, just maybe... justice for everyone’s favorite missing ginger, Barb Holland.

Could you share your experience playing both Joyce and Will, with Will being a puppet character?

I have had the best time playing both Joyce and Will! To get to explore this incredibly silly dichotomy is very exciting. Finding the similarities between the two has also been a fun challenge. Because let's face it, Joyce can also be a bit Muppet'ish at times too!

Can you describe how the unique "in-the-round" seating arrangement impacts your performance?

The in-the-round seating really makes you feel like you are a part of the show. When you walk into the theatre, our set transports you back to the 80's and makes you feel fully immersed in the Upside Down - especially when you snag one of our special VIP beanbag seats! We have lots of fans that love to come to the show dressed as their favorite Hawkins character, and that is always a joy to spot from the stage.

How does it feel to be part of a show that's won 7 BroadwayWorld Off-Broadway Awards?

It's a dream come true. Our creative team is truly outstanding and is the reason that our show has become the huge success that it is today. Jonathan Hogue (Book, Music, & Lyrics), Nick Flatto (Director), Ashley Marinelli (Choreographer), Michael Kaish (Music Supervision, Arrangements & Orchestrations) are some of the best in the business. It has been such a pleasure and a blessing to work with them.

Do you think audiences need to be familiar with the series to enjoy the parody musical?

Not at all! One of my favorite pieces of feedback to receive from audiences is, "I've never seen Stranger Things, but I loved Stranger Sings!". However, if you are a fan of the show you are going to love all of the inside jokes and easter eggs we have for you! But, no, it's not necessary to know the Netflix show to thoroughly enjoy our musical!

Why must audiences come and see the show?

Who doesn't like to laugh?! Stranger Sings is so much more than your typical parody musical - it is truly heartwarming and hilarious. Come on over to The Jaeb and be ready to laugh! We can't wait to see you in The Upside Down!




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