Will Mann, starring in Hadestown, is looking forward to walking his dog through the Dallas Arts District when the national Tony Award-winning musical tour stops in Dallas. It’s just one of many things he plans to do while in his hometown.
Presented by Dallas Summer Musicals, Hadestown plays at the Winspear Opera House in the Dallas Arts District from 18.-30. January.
Mann’s return plans include spending quality time with his family, giving a special birthday present to his niece, and grabbing a salad from Eatzi’s, a burger at Wingfield’s, and some tacos and elote in Fuel City.
“I told the cast, ‘We’ll get some cups of corn from a gas station,'” Mann said.
Husband moved to the Dallas area when he was a teenager. He graduated from Duncanville High School. His high school choir leader, Maria Green, encouraged him to pursue music. He attended the University of North Texas for two years before moving to Oklahoma City University to earn a degree in music with a focus on musical theater.
He worked at several theaters in North Texas, including Casa Mañana and the Dallas Theater Center, before moving to New York City in 2006. His Broadway credits include Oklahoma! and Memphis and his national tours are i.a. Memphis, Billy Elliott, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Elf and Wonderful town.
“I’m officially a New Yorker,” Mann said.
When the pandemic closed Broadway and national tours, Mann remained in Brooklyn. While doing a play in St. Louis, he was cast in Hadestown, his first national tour since the pandemic began.
“Being able to do what I love is paramount,” Mann said. “I do not believe that our gifts are for ourselves. Our gifts must be given, so it is very satisfying for me to be able to use my gifts. It means the whole world to me that we can do what we can even if we do not is 100% where we were before the pandemic. ”
With pandemic protocols in place, this tour is unlike Mann’s previous national tours.
“One of the big differences is our connection to the audience, as far as after the show at the stage door. We are not allowed to take pictures, sign autographs and be with the people,” Mann said. “I have been working on a digital stage door.”
Hadestown combines the age-old myths of Orpheus and Eurydice and King Hades and Persephone and adds some musical flavor and soul with New Orleans flavor.
“It’s about humanity, trust and love, and music and connection, and I think these things are universal and they last forever,” Mann said.
Mann associated himself with the musical’s unique sound.
“I remember the first time I heard the soundtrack. I thought, ‘Oh, this does not sound like anything else I’ve heard on any stage, Broadway or anywhere else.’ It resonated with me right away, “Mann said. “Hadestown truly encouraged voices that are independent and unique. When you listen to the soundtrack or come to see the show on Broadway or on tour, you will have a completely different experience because we were all encouraged to bring ourselves to the piece, and it does not fly unless we take with us who we are. is for history and music. “
Man playing a worker in Hadestown. The five workers always perform together and form a ubiquitous Greek choir.
“We fill the story and make it all come alive. Where there is magic involved, we give a lot of it. Plus, all workers have to be undergraduates, so there are powerful singers and actors in the workers’ choir, because they have to step into one of these lead roles and sail, ”Mann said.
Mann started a TikTok account to promote the talent for undergraduate and swing studies. Mann’s efforts come at a time when Charlotte St. Martin, the president of The Broadway League, blamed understudies and fluctuations for Broadway cancellations during the recent Omicron rise.
“My well-educated guess is that the newer shows may have sub-studies that are not as effective at delivering the role as the lead role. Some of the older shows have more experienced sub-studies and more experienced swings,” St. Martin said. The Hollywood Reporter on 21 Dec.
After an outcry from the theater community, St. Martin apologized.
Mann wants to inform the audience about how invaluable understudies and swings are, especially during the pandemic.
“Under-studies and swings have always been the backbone of Broadway, and they get the least amount of recognition. The talent it takes to do eight shows a week and to turn around and be someone else at a moment’s notice is enormous,” Mann said.
Mann understands that audiences can be disappointed when the star does not perform for a particular show.
“It does not matter what show you see, if you come and see that a star is not in a show, you will still have a great experience,” Mann said.
For the cast, the performance of an understudy is a creative challenge.
“When something new is introduced, it’s like, ‘Oh, we’re on our toes, and we’re alive.’ And it feels really refreshed and new, ‘” Mann said.
Fans of Hadestown love undergraduate studies and swings. Mann received a message from a fan who heard that he would play Hermes in a particular show. The fan was a larger man who identified with Mann.
“He bought a ticket right away and drove three hours to see my show because he said he had never seen anyone like him stand in the center and not be the sidekick or comedy relief. That was the star, and he looked like me, “Mann said. “We are really touching these people.
Learn more: Dallas Summer Musicals: Hadestown