In just a couple of more weeks, Broadway Across Canada will present Flashdance the Musical at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre, November 11-15. The much anticipated Broadway show has been the talk of the city for weeks, as fans of the original movie prepare to see the live performance on stage. Australia’s Adam Rennie, who plays the character Nick Hurley, can’t wait to get to Vancouver and to amaze the audience with his talents as he dives deep into his characters role and persona.
“Everyone keeps telling me that Vancouver is one of the most beautiful places that exists in the world,” said Adam, who has never been to Canada before. “I’m looking forward to that, to see how people are in other countries and to experience how subtly different people are.”
Well other than a few accents and slang words, copious amounts of Vancouver autumn rain and the lack of Vegemite, Adam will probably be pleasantly surprised.
Flashdance the movie came out just before Adam was born, but he recalls how it was such a huge phenomenon back in his home country of Australia.
“As soon as my manager called and asked if I wanted to audition for it, I was like, ‘yes!’” said Adam, explaining how he got the part in the touring theatre show. “I had been stocking music. I’m one of the few roles that is a singer and dancer. The songs from the movie, the five most popular songs, I don’t do in the show, but there are 16 new songs, and they perfectly tie in to the 80’s movie. They are music theatre pop songs. I get to go out there and sing some incredible music!”
The theatre company spent a month in New York preparing to go on the road. While the team is still fresh and excited, they are still working on exploring their characters.
“I have a big climax song, Enough, and it’s something that doesn’t get explored in the movie, but in the musical theatre, we get to see into the character more,” Adam said, explaining more about his character, Nick Hurley. “I have a revelation on stage. It’s a high intensity song for me. It’s a song that I always want to make sure I land. There’s a certain amount of energy that goes into that song, and making sure I’m vocally ready. I go through a lot during that song. For the character, it’s important for him.”
Adam also notes that his favourite scene that he is in is the loft scene, when Alex takes off her bra, which is one of the most stunning theatre, power-love duets. Adam is in love with the song!
Like any live performance, there are a lot of moving parts and pieces to the show, and there’s always a chance something could go wrong.
“It’s a big set,” Adam explains. “There are a lot of projections, lots of water and quick costume changes. Everyone on the team has a big and tall order. There are a million things that could go wrong. It’s the nature of live theatre. So far nothing big has happened that has really affected the spirit of the show. We understand if a costume change doesn’t happen perfectly, or a set piece doesn’t function. It’s the music and the people that are important.”
Like the majority of the cast of the show, Adam is openly gay, which is common in the live-theatre circuit.
“I don’t think it’s affected me negatively,” Adam said. “It’s scary going into any industry, thinking something could be held against you, but it’s about who you how and not about what you hide. I don’t go into a character thinking he’s straight and I’m not. I let the writers influence who I am. They take care of the rest. I just be as truthful as I can as a person, in strength and masculinity. I haven’t really felt inhibited by being gay. By being proud an existing within myself, it helps me as an actor.”
Adam reports that the cast is a fun, tight-knit group who gets along exceptionally well, and that the whole show, as a company, which drives a cohesive environment with respect for each other.
“There are a lot of very talented people sharing the stage each night, and if it looks like we are having fun, it’s because we are,” said Adam. “It’s infectious. We are all really happy to share that.”
While most people will never get the opportunity to see a show on Broadway in New York City, it’s the Broadway Across Canada performances that bring Broadway to major cities across Canada, so everyone can experience these kinds of shows.
The Vancouver performance of Broadway Across Canada’s Flashdance the Musical will be particularly exciting because a lot of the Flashdance family will be coming back for the show.
Get ready Vancouver… it’s going to be an epic show! If you don’t have tickets, you can still purchase them online through TicketMaster.