April 14, 2013

Sneak Peek of Fab Feature with Jersey Boys Las Vegas Cast in Blog.Vegas.com!

April 14th, 2013

JB Las Vegas 4 Seasons
The cast of “Jersey Boys” at their new home in the Paris. From left, back row: Travis Cloer and Graham Fenton. Front row: Deven May, Rob Marnell and Jeff Leibow. (Photo Credit: Christopher DeVargas)

Haley Etchison has a marvelous, in-depth feature article with the five actors who play Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons (Travis Cloer, Graham Fenton, Jeff Leibow, Rob Marnell & Deven May) eight times a week at Paris Las Vegas! From reading this interview with the guys offstage, it’s obvious why they click so well on stage as well:

My interview with the Jersey Boys is wrapping up when Deven, who plays Four Seasons founder Tommy DeVito, tells me not to pay attention to the voices at the door.

“Those aren’t monkeys,” he says. “Those are our dressers.”

“Speak for yourself,” jokes Rob, who, even in street clothes, seems like a lot like Bob Gaudio. “I have one monkey dresser. It is amazing.”

This kind of silliness is a little different than the combative camaraderie you see on stage, but the guys still lob dialogue around like they’re cutting up on the corner under a street light.

“Not only does it dress him but it preens him and gives him a banana,” Deven says.

“‘I’m tired of eating hairspray!’” (Rob gives the monkey a voice … )

“‘Deal with it, Cedric!’ (… and then answers himself.)

One of the show’s staff members reminds the boys that they have a sound check to get to, but Graham, who is playing Frankie Valli tonight, objects.

“This is groundbreaking monkey news!” he says.

The jokes have a different tone than those they make on stage, but the characters are all familiar. Before the interview became about monkey news, Deven told me that the five guys who play the Four Seasons all trust each other immensely.

“You have to,” he said. He pointed to some stage combat sequences to explain why trust is so important for the cast, but Jeff Leibow (who portrays Four Seasons founding member Nick Massi) had another reason.

“We have to play four guys in a band trying to get off the streets of Newark for years,” he said. “Tommy and Nick sang together for 12 years before Bob Gaudio ever came along. They’ve got to know each other. They’ve got to be familiar with each other. And we’ve got to be friendly, and the chemistry off-stage makes that possible.”

Did you see how Jeff switched from talking about “they” (the Four Seasons) to talking about himself and his fellow cast members? (“We’ve got to be friendly…”) That’s how the whole interview went – with the guys weaving in and out of their roles as though the green room were part of the stage or as though the stage were part of their kitchen and we were all sitting around the table talking about the show.

Travis, who splits the role of Frankie Valli with Graham, recalls a night when Deven hit Rob in the stomach on stage.

Bob Gaudio (Rob Marnell, left) and Frankie Valli (Travis Cloer) agree to a partnership.

“I feel like the younger brother in those moments,” Rob says.

Click HERE to read the entire feature.

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