Today, we have a fan interview from reader Bway Mom. She has seen the show twenty-two times over three years, including the Broadway, San Francisco, 1st, and 2nd National Touring production. Read her thoughts below!
Who is your favorite Elphaba and why?
Carmen Cusack will always be special to me. She was my first onstage Elphaba. Her performance was so amazing I knew I could never get enough of this show. Of those I have seen in person there is no favorite. They are all too amazing!!
Who is your favorite Glinda and why?
I do have a favorite Glinda and that would be Natalie Daradich. Her comedic timing is impeccable and yet she lets us see there is a caring, intelligent Glinda on the inside.
Who is your favorite Fiyero and why?
I have to say I don’t pay a whole lot of attention to Fiyero but Richard Blake has a stage presence that makes us remember he is there.
Which Elphaba/Glinda pair that you’ve seen do you feel had the best chemistry?
My favorite pair would have to be all of them!!! I have to honestly say I have never been disappointed!! The chemistry is always there. Leads, understudies or stand-by’s they all have the characters down pat.
Have you seen any understudies in the show? If so, what did you enjoy most about their performances?
I was lucky enough to see Carrie Manolakos and Felicia Ricci. These two just blew me away with there talent and there off stage personalities. Being understudies you could tell they gave the performance everything they had and a whole lot more.
We all know that the orchestra plays a huge part of the “Wicked” experience. Has one production’s orchestra stood out to you? If so, which one, and why?
I have to agree with another fan and say the orchestra in Buffalo was way above par. The little changes they added made the music more memorable–even though that is saying a lot considering the original composer is Stephen Schwartz.
If you stagedoor, tell us about your favorite stagedoor experience.
I very seldom stage door but all of my experiences have been pleasant ones. The actors are appreciative and friendly.
Tell us about your favorite performance of “Wicked” that you have seen.
The one that has meant the most to me besides the very first one has to be Dayton 2010, Marci Dodd and Helene Yorke made my first Wicked after Cancer a very memorable occasion. Beside there performance the 3 little girls that sat near me made me realize how special this show is.
Where is your favorite place to see the production from (ie. Orchestra, Balcony, etc.) and why?
I usually sit in the first few rows of the loge or balcony, because I am short and want to be able to see 🙂 I have seen performances from the orchestra which everyone should see just once, Defying Gravity has a whole new meaning.
Have you seen any fun bloopers or mishaps occur?
In Indianapolis, Marcie Dodd and Helen Yorke seemed to have misplaced the flower for Elphaba’s hair. They just ad-libbed through it and it miraculously appeared in the next seen. After that I noticed there is always an extra flower in one of Glinda’s shoes.
What are some other shows that you enjoy?
Rent has to be at the top of the list but I also enjoy revivals like Anything Goes, How To Succeed and South Pacific. Some of the newer shows I have seen like 9 to 5, Jersey Boys and Legally Blond will be on my see again list.
Which “Wicked” actor or alumni’s work do you enjoy the most, and why?
There are so many but Idina Menzel is by far my absolute favorite. I have seen her in concert nearly as many times as Wicked. She is so real and grounded in her performances. After the show it is even better, she signs everything, looks you in the eye and really makes it personal. I have been lucky enough to get a photo and on one occasion in Syracuse a friend and I actually stood and talked with her for about 15 minutes!! She will always be “The Elphaba” to me. I have seen Stephanie J. Block, Julia Murney, Shoshana Bean, Megan Hilty, Jennifer Laura Thomson and Kristen Chenoweth perform. I was also lucky enough to meet Stephen Schwartz on two different occasions. So all in all I guess you can say Wicked has led me to begin following some amazingly talented performers.