Being Jekyll and Hyde with Constantine Maroulis - INTERVIEW
blog by Kathryn Przybyla • November 01, 2012 @ 10:45am
Running at Shea’s through Nov. 4, Jeykll and Hyde stars former American Idol and Tony Award nominee Constantine Maroulis in the title dual role of Dr. Henry Jekyll and Edward Hyde, alongside Grammy Award nominee and R&B superstar Deborah Cox as Lucy.
According to the show, “Conceived for the stage by Tony and Grammy Award nominee Frank Wildhorn and Steve Cuden, the four-time Tony Award Nominated musical “Jekyll and Hyde” features a book and lyrics by two-time Oscar winner, Emmy winner and four-time Tony Award Nominee Leslie Bricusse, music by Frank Wildhorn, and will be directed and choreographed by Tony Award Nominee Jeff Calhoun.”
We got a chance to talk to the leading man while he’s in Buffalo for the string of performances this week. Here is what Maroulis had to say.
How has your time been in Buffalo so far? Kind of a dreary week it seems.
Constantine Maroulis: It’s been kind of fun to be honest. We’ve been to such warm places recently with beautiful weather, honestly it’s nice to be back in New York. I’m from this state and it’s nice to smell the cold again. Unfortunately my family was greatly affected among many others for the unfortunate circumstances of recent weather, but it’s nice to be closer to home.
I’ve been through Buffalo, many moons ago. But this time I really get to appreciate the city and some of the fantastic american history and architecture I’ve seen so far.
Tell me about landing your role for “Jekyll & Hyde,” was it different to prepare for when you did “Rock of Ages?”
CM: I was approached about six months ago when they were putting together the revival. Jeff Calhoun is such a super talented director, a real “actor’s director” and performer. He of course hit a homerun with “Newsies” on Broadway and he’s such a great leader. With his experience, it was good math all around. This show was a great challenge for me after “Rock of Ages” and it just made sense. Any actor in a leading male role would love the opportunity to tackle a show like this.
In terms of preparation, it was extensive. I worked all summer on the role before company rehearsals even started. I had an acting coach and we pieced the story back together for me to portray. It was an organic experience from the beginning.
Is Broadway looking like something you want to stick with for a while?
CM: I grew up working to be an actor and it’s always been a goal of mine. I want to create fun and innovative roles on Broadway and work with some of the best talent. I have a real blue collar work ethic and I enjoy all of it. I was living my dream long before American Idol and studying in the acting world. It’s all about quality work for me, whether that comes in the form of a new record or another Broadway show.
What would be your dream role?
CM: I think I’ve been very lucky and fortunate to create these roles and be in these shows so far. There have been amazing roles written, but my dream roles are the new shows that haven’t been written yet. I want to work with the next big composer or playwright. But I do look forward to more classical parts too. It would be exciting to do a very modern rendition of a Shakespeare piece one day.
What have been some of your favorite and least favorite parts about being on the road?
CM: I’m built for the road and really enjoy the lifestyle. I don’t think people know really what they assume it entails. I don’t even drink and there’s a lot of expectations with this sort of thing. You really have to take care of yourself. I like the camaraderie on the cast and crew, but it is difficult to be away from my family. Being away from my parents as they’re getting older is hard too and I have a young daughter now. It’s difficult, but I want to do my best to provide for them.
Any cities you’re really looking forward to visiting?
CM: I’ve sort of been everywhere before with touring, if not within a few hundred miles. I look forward to whatever’s next. It’s always about my work first and the places I get to see are a great part of this job.
Have you had a chance to grab some wings while you’ve been in town?
CM: Not yet! But I love chicken wings, so I’m looking forward to it. I’m sort of a mild guy though. The stage is my life so my tongue’s too important to have it scorched.
What are your favorite songs to sing in the shower?
CM: Wow, good question! I don’t sing a lot in the shower these days. But historically, I was always singing “Into the Mystic” by Van Morrison, it covers all the layers of my voice. “Buffalo Soldier,” that Bob Marley song is good too. Thirdly, I’d have to go with a Frank Sinatra or Elvis song, maybe “Love Me Tender” or “Stardust.”
Photo credit: CHRIS BENNION - Constantine Maroulis as Henry Jekyll in JEKYLL & HYDE