Thursday, April 26, 2018

Spotlight On...Michael Kushner

Name: Michael Kushner

Hometown: Coral Springs, FL

Education: BFA in Musical Theatre from Ithaca College

Select Credits: On The Town (Barrington Stage, Pre Broadway), Much Ado About Nothing (Barrington Stage), Sons of the Prophet (GableStage), Eastbound (MTF / Playwrights Horizons), Balloon Boy (NYMF), Toxic If Swallowed (Ars Nova)

Why theater?: I'm not good at anything else! Math? No. Science? Nah. I remember my grandma teaching me about theatre when I was very young and even then I was like, "This feels right." On the macro level - it brings so many people together, inspires change, and heals.

Tell us about Moo With Me: It's a play about showing up, demanding what you want out of life, and owning yourself. I was in middle school right when Wicked came out and, like many of us, I identified so deeply with the story. Once I discovered Idina, it was over, that whole experience helped me discover who I was: zany, vulnerable, powerful. The play leads up to the moment where I got to photograph her for an event - and how that changed my life.

Who do you play in Moo With Me?: Myself. And Idina for a literal line.

What is it like being a part of Moo With Me?: Terrifying and liberating! It's only me up there. But the fourth wall is broken and the delivery is sort of stand-up-ish, so it feels like a safe space with the audience relating to me.

What kind of theater speaks to you? What or who inspires you as an artist?: All theatre inspires me. It takes guts to get up there and create something, bearing your whole soul! Whether or not it's "good" or not, just the buzz, energy, and bravery of a performance is enough to make me want to work. As for who inspires me? The greats. Ethel, Judy, Patti, Idina. I'm also incredibly inspired by artists that keep other artists working like Seth Rudetsky, Shakina Nayfack, and Jennifer Ashley Tepper, all who I've had the pleasure of working with before.

What's your favorite showtune?: "One Day More" from Les Miserables. It's tattooed on my chest.

If you could work with anyone you've yet to work with, who would it be?: Carol Channing and I would be great scene partners.

Who would play you in a movie about yourself and what would it be called?: I think Idina should play me in a movie. That's pretty appropriate. It would be called "Ethel Merman is BACK! or The Wide Vibratoed Kid" ...or something.

If you could go back in time and see any play or musical you missed, what would it be?: SO many. The original companies of Gypsy, Cabaret, My Fair Lady, Les Mis, and Chicago, Marat / Sade, The Scarlet Pimpernel, Footloose.

What show have you recommended to your friends?: Come From Away.

What's your biggest guilty pleasure?: Broadway bootlegs!

What's up next?: You're telling me.

For tickets to Moo with Me, visit For more on Michael, visit and