August 25, 2007

JBB Fantastic Fan Interview With Ariana and Lauren!

August 25th, 2007

We think it’s safe to say that no other show–on Broadway or a national tour–that has the dynamic fan base of Jersey Boys!! It’s our pleasure to present our 25th JBB Fantastic Fan Interview with Ariana and Lauren–two incredible fans that ADORE Jersey Boys!

JBB: Tell us about yourselves.

Ariana: My name is Ariana and I’m 18 years old, and I’m from the San Francisco Bay Area. I just moved to Los Angeles to attend the University of Southern California. I love to dance, and have been doing ballet for the past 12 years and counting. Theatre has always been one of my passions, and was a featured dancer in my high school’s production of ‘Beauty and the Beast’ this past year.

Lauren: My Name is Lauren. I’m 21 years old and I’ve lived in the Bay Area my whole life, but I’m getting ready to pop the bubble; and see what the rest of the world has to offer me, more importantly what I have to offer the world. My friends and family mean the world to me; I don’t know what I would do without them. I guess you could say I’m a creative soul, I love to write (mostly poetry), paint and most recently I’ve picked up scrapbooking. I’m much more articulate when I write rather then when I talk. For now I work part-time as an office assistant for my parents but what I want to do more then anything is to be a Personal Assistant. Oh, and of course I LOVE live theatre (mostly musicals).

JBB: When did you first hear about Jersey Boys, and how did you become interested in the show?

A: I first heard about Jersey Boys when I was checking out which shows would be in San Francisco next season… that was about a year ago, I believe. I’ve always loved going to musicals, and of course, Jersey Boys is a must-see. I did some research on the show and was excited to find out that I already knew some of the songs.

L: A friend of mine had told me I should get the cast recording, I didn’t know much about the show, so I listened to a few clips online and then ended up getting it but I didn’t listen to it for a while. A few weeks after that, another friend told me I had to listen to it , so I did, and I immediately recognized most of the songs and I was totally hooked to it. Then, I heard the tour was opening in San Francisco. So, when yet another friend came home on a break from school in January we went and got Rush tickets.

JBB: What was your reaction to the show upon seeing it for the first time?

A: I was entranced. I was sitting up in the loge, and the show had me hooked right from the opening chords. I connected with the show mentally and emotionally, and I loved it! I met a few of the actors at the stage door afterwards, and all of them were so friendly and courteous. I remember Michael Ingersoll stuck out his hand and said, “Hi, I’m Michael,” when he saw me standing there with my Playbill.

L: I fell in love with it from the second it started. When the show ended, we ran to the stage door and met who we could. Then, we were walking to go back to BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) to go home, but because it was a Wednesday and there were two shows, we decided to stop before crossing the street and ran back into the lobby and got in the rush line again and saw it a second time.

JBB: How many times have you seen JB & what keeps bringing you back?

A: I’ve seen the show nine times so far – eight with the “Sherry” cast and once with the SF/Chicago cast. I can’t get away from the storyline or the music; I never get tired of the show! It’s always interesting to see how different actors interpret the characters. But, in the end, I don’t think I would have seen the show this many times if it wasn’t for the cast. By seeing the show so many times, I’ve developed quite a rapport with them. If I was in the area, but didn’t have time to see the show, I’d definitely go to the theatre just to say hello to them.

L: As of right now, nine, but God only knows how many more times I will see it. For the most part, what keeps me coming back is the cast, they’re some of the most genuinely nice and definitely the most talented group of people I have ever met, but it’s also the fact that every time I see the show, I get completely sucked into the story.

JBB: Who have you brought with you to see Jersey Boys, and what was their reaction to the show?

A: I was with my family the first time I saw the show, and they all loved it! I saw it a couple more times with my parents, and I’ve also brought friends to see it a few times. However, Lauren will always be my “Jersey Boys buddy”! I’ve seen the show the most times with her. It’s funny, if one of us went to the show without the other the cast members always asked where the other was – we’re like a unit! Everyone I’ve seen the show with has been absolutely blown away.

L: I took my brother, in April, he wasn’t that sure about it at first since all he had heard about it was it’s a musical but he came out of it liking it a lot. He said besides the show the best part was seeing me in my element, where I’m most happy. It was an important day for both of us I got to show him a part of my life he’s never been exposed to and it was the one year anniversary of our grandfather’s death.

JBB: Why do you think people have such a strong connection to Jersey Boys?

A: I think people are initially attracted to Jersey Boys because of the music. Many people are already familiar with the Four Seasons and know their songs, and in some cases people know the songs but don’t realize they’re Four Seasons songs. The show does a wonderful job of showing how four guys go from basically nothing to everything in such a short amount of time. These guys start out as ordinary people, and I think that has a very strong pull on the audience. Also, it’s great how the audience becomes a character of some sort. A lot of the big songs are performed in a concert-like style.

L: The most obvious and easiest answers are it takes the older generations back to when they were growing up; and the younger generations get to see first-hand what it was like when their parents or grandparents were growing up and also the music–it brings in fans of the Four Seasons. The harder answer is that it’s not like any other show out there, its performed like a concert and the audience is part of it for most of the show they’re not watching actors on a stage even during the parts of the show that aren’t performed like a concert, the audience still gets talked to, and it gives that inside look and back history to the highs and lows of Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons that not a lot of people know.

JBB: Have you met any of the JB cast members?

A: I’ve met pretty much all of the “Sherry” cast, except for Erik Bates. I’ve seen him perform, but I never see him at the stage door. The entire cast is so friendly! Melissa Strom even took Lauren and I backstage once, which was an amazing experience. They’re a wonderful group of people and have a never ending supply of hugs! Lauren and I met Douglas Crawford before we saw him perform, which was pretty cool. We saw him with Michael Ingersoll before one of the shows, and when we went over to say hello to Michael he introduced himself to us. I recently met a few of the SF/Chicago cast members, including Drew Gehling, Jeremy Kushnier, John Michael Dias, and Craig Laurie. I met Jarrod Spector way back in January when he was the Frankie alternate for the “Sherry” cast. A few months ago when I was college-hunting in NYC, I visited the August Wilson stage door and met Christian Hoff and Daniel Reichard, but unfortunately John Lloyd Young had to catch a plane that day and couldn’t stick around after the show.

L: I’ve met almost the entire “Sherry” cast (except for Erik Bates– somehow I’ve missed him every time at the stagedoor) and a few of the crew, along with Heather Ferguson when she was in San Francisco doing the shows for a few weeks; and I just recently met John Michael Dias, Drew Gehling and Jeremy Kushnier…Two of my favorite memories at the show are definitely when Melissa Strom took Ariana and I on a tour of the backstage [Thank You So Much Melissa!] and spending my entire 21st birthday [8am to almost midnight] at the theatre, but with that said, every time I’m at the theatre, it’s equally as special, it’s got a special kind of energy surrounding it that you can’t feel anywhere else…

JBB: What’s your favorite Jersey Boys scene & why?

A: Do I only get to pick one? Hmm… I love when the four guys sing together for the first time during “Cry for Me” – it’s such a wonderful moment in the show! I also love “My Eyes Adored You,” at the very end when the guys are standing underneath the streetlamp. Another favorite of mine is Nick Massi’s infamous “Towel Speech”… it’s hilarious! And also the end of the show when the boys come up on the lift for “Rag Doll.” It’s too hard to pick only one!

L: I can’t just pick one, how about the whole thing haha… I love those intense moments between Tommy and Frankie, and like Ariana I love “Cry For Me” when all four boys sing together for the first time, you can see it all come together and click for them as a group.

JBB: How about your favorite musical number in Jersey Boys & why?

A: I absolutely love the finale. It’s so upbeat, and it makes me want to dance every time! The entire cast is on stage, having the time of their lives, and their energy fills every inch of the theatre. The perfect ending to such a wonderful show.

L: Again, can’t I just pick all of them?? Since I can’t just pick one I’m gonna say “Walk Like A Man,” “Beggin,’” “Fallen Angel,” “Big Man In Town,” “Who Loves You,” and “My Eyes Adored You.”

JBB: Do you have a favorite line from the show?

A: Hmm… I love the line the waitress says after Bob Gaudio talks about the objective correlative: “You’re not from around here, are you?” And I love the Siberia line that was taken out of the show… I’m so sad it‘s not in the show anymore!

L: I loved the Siberia line (I’m sad it got taken out), I love Nick’s rant about Tommy and the towels and the hotel room, and his “Maybe I should start my own group” line. I also really love Bob Crewe and Tommy’s exchange about what “Walk Like A Man” is about…I really should have just said I love everything for all of these questions shouldn’t I have?? haha…

JBB: Prior to seeing Jersey Boys, were you familiar with the Four Seasons’ music? If so, do you have a favorite 4 Seasons’ song?

A: I had heard a few of the songs before, like “Can‘t Take My Eyes Off of You,” “Sherry,” and “Walk Like a Man,” but I never knew they were by the Four Seasons.

L: Yes and No, I knew most of the songs, but I didn’t know that they were sung by The Four Seasons. I grew up listening to old music on road trips, it wasn’t until listening to the cast recording that I figured out that it was The Four Seasons.

JBB: Anything else you’d like to share about Jersey Boys?

A: I think Jersey Boys is a wonderful show, and I would tell everyone who hasn’t had the chance to see it to buy tickets as soon as possible! I’ve met so many great people through this show and have memories that will last a lifetime. Thank you to everyone involved in this show for making it so special!

L: Jersey Boys has been a HUGE part of my life these past eight months and I’ve met some of the most amazing people, that will be in my life forever because of it. If you haven’t seen Jersey Boys and its coming near you or you’re in NY or going to NY get tickets NOW!!!

Thank you so much to Ariana and Lauren for sharing their incredible passion for the show, the music, and the cast of Jersey Boys! As of today, we have had the chance to interview 26 (25 interviews) incredible Jersey Boys’ fans! We’re always looking for new fans to tell their JB story! If you would like to be featured in a JBB Fantastic Fan Interview, feel free to contact us! Please click on the Contact Page and send us your contact information.


  1. Yay great interview, girls!
    And yay I happen to be “A few weeks after that, another friend told me I had to listen to it…” that friend in one of laurens’ answers!

    Comment by Yvette — August 25, 2007 @ 10:30 pm

  2. Welcome to the “Fantastic Fans” group and thanks for the excellent interview!

    You definitely are great fans because spreading the word about the show is the best thing to get people into the seats. The extremely short Jersey Boys TV commercial featuring John Lloyd Young in the SF Bay Area is way too brief for anyone to notice.

    The younger generation (I’m a tweener) is what I’m seeing more of at the theatre and amazingly at the “Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons” concerts that are on DVD and also on local public television. Their songs are ageless and have more meaning than what I hear on the radio nowadays. I’d rather listen to 60′s/70′s music than some modern genres because of how their lyrics make sense and reflect true life without sugarcoating it.

    Thanks so much for the very informative interview and for sharing your experiences with the casts!

    Comment by Mike B. Magbaleta — August 27, 2007 @ 3:22 pm

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