I truly don’t think I could have asked for a better experience than the one I just had with CHEER WARS. There’s nothing quite like four years away from a piece to make you fall in love with it all over again, and there was no more wonderful way to get back into it than with the amazing team we had. And I have to name them all:
Director Hunter Foster and MD Vadim Feichtner, our (literally) fearless leaders, gave us the fullest vision of the show we could ever have hoped for in such a short amount of time – and Associate Director Greg Santos deserves a special shout-out for lending us some cheer authenticity in addition to his valuable input and warmth. SM Rebecca McBee and ASM Chris Flores kept us all sane and happy (and kept smiles every time I handed them new pages.)
Then there’s the cast. Oh, the cast. I still feel like I have to pinch myself that I get to work with Annie Golden and Mary Testa – two performers who did the impossible and somehow made me even bigger fans of theirs since I’ve gotten to work with them. And even after spending a week in the room with her, I can’t help but giggle in amazement that I got to work with Sally Struthers and experience her legendary kindness and generosity (and chops) firsthand. I feel so fortunate to have gotten to meet and work with Britney Coleman, Stephanie Hsu, and Michael Dean Morgan for the first time; and I feel extra lucky to have finally gotten to work in this setting with Alyse Alan Louis and Molly Hager (after years of jealously watching them onstage in concerts or in my friends’ shows.) It was beyond wonderful to have Robb Sapp back in the show, seven years after his first go as Randy at NYU, being just as heartwarmingly hilarious now as he was then. I was so happy to get to watch Dana Steingold back in the world of cheer (after coming with me to the worlds of pregnant teens and Anita Bryant over the last few years) as she brought Halle front and center. And, of course, I’m grateful that the streak continued with Amy Linden, who has been involved in more iterations of the show than anyone other than Karlan and me.
Thanks to Jim Morgan, Andrew Levine, Seth Christenfeld, Amber Wallace, and everyone at the York for taking us on.
Until next time!