February 5, 2011

Preview of Jarrod Spector’s NEXT GEN Insider Interview!

February 5th, 2011

Jarrod SpectorThe NEXT GEN Insider blog has an in-depth and fascinating interview with Jarrod Spector, who talks about his new solo show, “Minor Fall, Major Lift,” his early life in show biz, playing the Frankie Valli role in JERSEY BOYS Broadway, and some other surprises. Here’s a sneak peek to this great interview!

Q: Jarrod, what was your inspiration for this new show?

Jarrod Spector: I’ve wanted to do a show like this for years, but the truth is I didn’t know what to say, and like I say in the show itself, I didn’t want it to be a night of “shower songs”. Adam Ben-David was the conductor of Jersey Boys on Broadway when I came to the company a few years ago, and as soon as he said he wanted to work with me that really got the ball rolling. I have such respect and love for him so I put my fears aside and figured we’d work and see what happens. We brought in Eric Michael Gillett to direct—Adam had worked with him many times before, particularly with shows for Adam’s sister Sheera Ben-David—and he helped me to figure out that we could use music from my life and background to tell a story and find a way to present it in such a way that it wouldn’t be the self-indulgent autobiographical nightmare that I’d feared. My fear, of course, was putting together a show that only my family would want to hear. I think with Eric’s help we put something together that can appeal to almost any audience member.

Q: When you grew up in Philly, who were your mentors? Who did you study at an early age?

JS: I took singing and piano lessons from a Philly legend named Russell Faith, who sadly passed away a few years back. Like most single-digit-aged kids my biggest musical influence was my parents so I grew up listening mostly to Motown (Stevie Wonder, MJ, Jackson 5, Four Tops, Stylistics), Barry Manilow, Bobby Darin, and Frank Sinatra.

Q: How do you feel about being able to be placed in a Broadway show that actually tells the real story of a real pop group? Is there a difference in what you feel rather than any other show?

JS: Well the actor in me wants to analyze what the writers have put on the page and the fan in me wants to give the audience something as close to Frankie Valli as is humanly possible. I do my best to tread somewhere in the middle, not necessarily do a Frankie Valli “imitation” but I listened and attempted to pilfer as many of his vocal and physical nuances as I could–all the while trying to do justice to the character the writers have created. When playing a fictional character, of course you have more liberty to create the character as you and the director see fit, without having to worry about paying homage to any real person.

Visit NextGenInsider.com to read the full interview with Jarrod!

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