Friday, September 30, 2011

Spotlight On...Sean Bell

Name: Sean Bell

Hometown: Red Bank, New Jersey

Education: The American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA)

Select Credits: Madame X (Ensemble, NYMF); Deathtrap (Clifford Anderson, The Fulton Opera House); The Radio City Christmas Spectacular (Vocalist, National Tour)

Why theater?: There’s never really been any other choice for me, really.  I had a lot of interests growing up but theatre has always been my passion.

Tell us about Madame X: It’s basically a send-up of 1960s melodrama. It’s written by the creator of Forbidden Broadway, Gerard Alessandrini, so you know it’s bound to be hilarious. Our cast is amazingly versatile and talented and the material is just so witty. Expect a lot of plot, a lot of over-the-top drama and some really moving moments as well.

What is it like to be a part of Madame X?: It’s been a whirlwind. We’ve had a very short rehearsal period and it’s a new show, so almost everyone involved started from square one. It’s been wonderful to be part of the process though. Being involved with new work is the most exciting thing an actor can do, I think.

What kind of theater speaks to you? What or who inspires you as artists?: I like so many different forms of theatre, from light musicals to serious drama. I favor the latter, usually, but I love anything that leaves me moved and pushes the boundaries of the art form. As for inspiration? My friends. I have such incredibly talented friends and they really inspire me to keep working and to keep improving myself as a performer. Also: Sondheim, LaChiusa, Guettel, Shakespeare, Martin McDonough, Gene Kelly, Danny Kaye and Meryl Streep. Always Meryl Streep.

Any roles you’re dying to play?: Plenty! Mordred in Camelot, Septimus in Arcadia, Ken in Red, Bobby in A Chorus Line. And I’d gladly play a doormat in anything by Sondheim. I tend to gravitate towards acting-heavy roles and I have extremely eclectic tastes.

What’s your favorite show tune?: Oh, hell. I have so many. “Sunday” from Sunday in the Park… makes me sob like a small child. The most played song on my iPod is “Back to Paradise” from Marie Christine. The overture of Gypsy ranks pretty high. So does “Moments in the Woods.” I could write a dissertation on show tunes I love.

If you could work with anyone you’ve yet to work with, who would it be?: Oooooh. Hmmm. I mean, if we’re talking ANYONE? Meryl Streep, please.

Who would play you in a movie about yourself and what would it be called?: I would want Jake Gyllenhaal to play me, because he is both prettier than I could ever be and…well, what other reason do you need? As for a title, I really want to come up with something witty but it’s almost midnight and I’m losing steam. My apologies, dear reader. 

What show have you recommended to your friends?: Follies. Though I’ve also been recommending Sleep No More to friends even though I haven’t seen it yet.  It just sounds so incredible! I can’t wait to see it.

What’s up next?: I start rehearsals for All American with Musicals Tonight! as soon as Madame X closes. I’ll be playing Edwin Bricker. It’s a really fun show and a wonderful company to work for. Come check it out!

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