InDepth InterView: Ramin Karimloo Talks SubCulture Shows, New EPs, LES MISERABLES, PHANTOM & More
People have shipped Ramin Karimloo and Sierra Boggess AKA “Rierra leads in “Love Never Dies,” despite that Karimloo is married with two boys. Another issue I have noticed is people shipping James Snyder and Idina. May 24, Sierra Boggess on her relationship with Ramin Karimloo | SO cute , I swear Discover ideas about Theatre Problems. Sierra Boggess on her. The BEST source for Sierra Boggess, Sierra Boggess Tickets, and Sierra Boggess Both Broadway icons have had a long working relationship with End. In June, Boggess toured Japan with Phantom star Ramin Karimloo.
If it comes off, we'll share it; if it doesn't, then we will have spent a nice afternoon together. I can't believe you asked about that. We actually just put that back on the list - I mean, it's such a stripped-back show. We've got a guy on guitar, banjo and mandolin; me on guitar and banjo; another guy on guitar; and, then a guy on piano - so, I thought, "Oh, we could really strip this back and do a really haunting version of it.
What about some other recent live favorites of yours - "Murder In The City" maybe? Oh, well, those songs - things like "Murder In The City" - we usually only put in if the moment comes, you know? If you are moved to perform them. So, the set-list changes all the time and so do the versions of the songs.
Sierra Boggess' path less travelled to Broadway stardom
You know, I'd hate to do a version of the song that my heart really isn't in and disappoint them - especially because there are so many songs to choose from! I think we are in a great position that way. Part of what makes PHANTOM 25 so alive and compelling is the sense of experimentation and daringness and risk - it seems that is an elemental part of performance for you. Is the risk always worth it or have you had some bad turns? Always - always - take the risk! The only time that I feel something doesn't work is whenever I start listening to myself or second-guessing myself - it's like being in a rehearsal room with mirrors; if you can see yourself, then you are sort of out of the moment.
You can't watch it and be in the moment at the same time, you know? A very instructive point. I always say to people that some of the best times I have performed have been when I have gone in sick - you know, you have a sore throat or whatever and you just say, "Eh, whatever will be, will be," and you just do it; you don't expect anything of yourself, you just do your best.
That is when I have found that I give the best performances - otherwise, I am too worried about, "Oh, did I push that note right," or "Did that come across? It's about telling the story - it's about real life - and the moment that I stop worrying about what other people think, suddenly I felt a lot more free and I started enjoying myself.
So, you're basically saying then that being sick is the secret to greatness - and, no expectations.
InDepth InterView: Ramin Karimloo Talks SubCulture Shows, New EPs, LES MISERABLES, PHANTOM & More
You can say that again! There are a hundred ways that you could have told that story - and, all of them are valid. But, this is the one that was chosen and this is the one that we did - you can't change that to fit what people want or expect, you know? Of course, especially with big shows like that, people will always come to them with expectations anyway - and that's fine; you can have them - but I don't think, as artists, we should take that into account really.
I think we should be brave in what we do and hope that people will like it - and, if not; well Or, what about performing them in rep someday? The Australian version of the sequel was very satisfying. So many people say that, don't they?! As you might know, that version that they did down in Australia was exactly the same version of the show - the same script and score - that we performed for the last two weeks in London. The show developed so much after we opened - so much. I mean, I remember we had rehearsals to put new changes in two weeks before closing and being like, "Are you kidding me?!
Yeah, it was crazy - but, it was great to do, too. Was it invigorating as an actor to continue to work on the show so much, even after it had officially opened? Going into it, I thought, "Oh, OK, we're just going to stand there and sing," but, as we did it, we ended up playing the scene - without any props or without any gimmicks - and it suddenly all came flooding in to me, like, "Holy crap! There is some unfinished business here.
If Sierra is doing it with me, I would do them again - yeah. Would you play the Phantom again if it becomes a trilogy? Did you feel satisfied with your journey with the show? I mean, I saw standing ovations every night, but, also, I know that it wasn't full, either. So, shows these days are hard enough to sell as it is, and, now, with social media - even if it is completely positive - sometimes over-hype doesn't help the matter either. So, it was just a weird situation. You can spend all day trying to pinpoint why this worked or why that didn't, but, at the end of day, it was just one of those things.
So, those that saw it, I hope they enjoyed it; and, those that were in it, I hope they had a good time doing it. And, there's a tour happening next year, apparently, so I hope the show shall continue.
And, I think that part of the reason why it hasn't played Broadway yet is because of its history. Plus, look at how hard it is for shows to get on Broadway these days - look at REBECCA and all the business problems with that; it's a really tough industry.
But, I think everything is on the up-and-up right now so hopefully there will be a future for the show and it can find a home on Broadway someday. Oh, that's a great idea!
I should do that "Reminder" that we did in Japanese. I think people might like that.
Let’s talk about “Rierra!” | musicalreviewer92
Oh, I adore Lea - she is just a legend in her own right. She is so much fun to work with and we just had a blast on tour together recently. Another fabulous leading lady you have performed together with so brilliantly is Kerry Ellis. Are you a fan, as well? Oh, I love Kerry - yeah, that was a lot of fun to do that. We actually did a version of "Somewhere" that I really liked and I think that was the start of something really good - I'd love to record the song in that sort of style like we did it; I'd love to record it with her, too.
I remember being there and being like, "Man! I wish we had more time to develop this and some other songs. Given her affiliation with Brian Maymaybe some Queen? Was that a challenge? I was like, "All right, I'm just gonna close my eyes and hope for the best that these notes come out! In addition to bluegrass, what kind of music do you listen to for enjoyment on your own - either listening or singing? Oh, well, right now, I have been taking a little rest - and, for me, rest is rest - so I haven't been singing a lot, but I have been playing around with that old traditional hymn "Wayfaring Stranger".
I love the Jack White version of that, especially - that's the one, for me. I love listening to Johnny Cashtoo. Is there a future for your musical collaborations with your friend and frequent former co-star Hadley Fraser? Listen, this is how it works with me and Hadley: The wicked ways of fate - and showbiz! It is definitely something we both want to do, but there is only so much time in a year, you know? No, I actually don't know when I finish as Valjean at the moment.
Right now, though, to be honest, I am just really focused on getting my voice in perfect shape and growing this beard If things go well in Toronto, are you under consideration for the Broadway revival, as well? Well, as far as I know, that's not on the cards for me - and, there's other things on the calendar now, too.
What we are starting in Canada and the momentum that the show will carry to Broadway is just going to be phenomenal. There is something about the Far East that brought so much to it - I don't know what it is; they have a spirituality and a way of culture that translates onto LES MIZ so beautifully. And, I have to admit, I went to see it a little reluctantly - you know, it's my day off and it's a show I am about to do for eight months or whatever.
It was so beautiful and I was so glad that I went to see it there. What are your personal favorite moments onstage as Valjean, particularly having played it in the West End before? I guess I would say that the parts I love the most in the show are all the little scenes of Valjean interacting - as opposed to the "Soliloquy" and "Bring Him Home", which are great moments; but, I love learning who he is with other people.
I mean, seeing him with Cosette in the garden during "In My Life" - I love those moments; things like that. Or, another is the moments with the Thenardiers - I love those. Probably my favorite moment in the show is the scene with the Bishop that leads up to the "Soliloquy" - that is the pivotal part of the storytelling to me, at least as far as my Valjean goes. That's the part of the book where I found my confidence and my way around the character and the moment when I decided I wanted to play him.
Was reading the book particularly insightful for you? Oh, yeah - I've read it twice now, actually. I am going through it again now, too - and, I have to admit that I am not a great reader so I have to work a little bit harder at it.
What I do is I got it on audio book so I listen and read along with it - and, I have to say, the images that come into my head doing it that way, hearing it That is the best memorization technique, they say.
It is - I know it must be. I've got in front of my eyes, going over it with a highlighter and a voice reading it in my ear - that's the best way I have found to really get under his skin and try to find out who he is.
For me, there are a few very distinct Valjeans - and, it's all in the way he moves; the way he ages; the physical characteristics. You know, he's a man of means who is still strong and agile for his age, after all Norm Lewis recently told me that playing Javert a few times now has made him want to play Valjean someday.
Do you feel the same? Would you be open to playing Javert? Oh, definitely - especially now that I've seen what Hadley did with the role! And, what I saw in Korea.
Both really inspired me. Well, I think I am pretty much a free agent after that. My agent and my manager want me to move to LA and see if I can get some work out there, so that will be exciting - I think we are going to be giving that a shot. Oh, that was so much fun, man! I played the Greek manager of the spa - which was really fun to do.
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As for LA, though, I have had some opportunities to do some things before, but I really feel like it has to be the right thing - if I am moving my whole family out there, it has to be for something creatively inspired; hopefully, it will be the right thing at the right time.
For me, it is all about diversity - look at all these crossovers these days! The performing arts are everywhere. Right now, I know that I have a lot of support on the other side of the pond - clearly, given that you and I are speaking today - and I am excited for people over here to see me.
I am so excited to get to be here and work with some of the great talent that is here - like Raul Esparza and Norbert Leo Butz and Sierra and all of these great directors, too.
What about a straight dramatic or comedic role someday?Voice Teacher Reacts to Phantom of the Opera - Sierra Boggess & Ramin Karimloo
That's a play I would really, really love to do - though I don't know how age-appropriate I would be now! You see, the thing about Valjean is that he was so agile and had such dexterity, so I am doing specific work-outs to target that - I just want to feel strong and supple like he is.
He is stronger than anyone else around him, after all, as you know - and, he obviously had the wherewithal to keep himself fit. Plus, Hugh Jackman just played the role That's a whole other comparison to live up to right there! I loved that whole LA week so much - especially working with the company. Having those 10 minutes with Hugh, though - I mean, there we were, just talking about the character and the cameras were all there snapping away at us.
It was so encouraging to me, what he said - he told me about his process and I felt like, "Oh, yeah! I'm gonna do that! You go at it quite a bit differently. Yeah, but, it was great to talk to him about it - and, I love how we put it all together and made it all work. It was an amazing event to be a part of - and, also, a lot of people saw it!
They are not things I auditioned for or sought out in any way. So, when I heard they were doing LES MIZ at the 02, I remember thinking "Oh, well, obviously they are going to get all big stars," so when my agent called a few days later and told me they wanted me for Enjolras and that he had already been working on the deal for the last five days, I was like, "What?! What a pleasant surprise! And, then - and this is one of the reasons I still love this business and still feel like a kid; now, more than ever - is that then he said, "And you are going to get paid such and such," and all I said was, "Wait - and, I'm getting paid?!
You would have worked for free! I just wanted to be there with all of the stars of the show - a lot of my closest friends were on that stage with me and it was a really great thing to be a part of. I was really proud of that performance and I think it turned out to be a really memorable experience for every one of us.
You've played Chris before, have you not? That and Valjean are two of my favorite characters I have played, actually - and the Phantom, too, of course. As for the revival, though, I think I'm probably not the right age anymore, but I will definitely be there in the audience! What about that part? Oh, well, I'd love to play that. I remember that Cameron mentioned something to me about that before, actually, and at the time I just was like, "Well, then, get it done, man!
It's a special time I think for all of us in the theatre trying to branch out. What are your thoughts on the performing arts renaissance in general - thanks in no small part to GLEE?
Oh, I think it's wonderful. Shows like GLEE and SMASH and these big Hollywood-made movie musicals like LES MIZ have brought a lot more attention to all of us, I think - and, you know, people might want to criticize them or whatever but I think it's so amazing that they have brought awareness of the theatre to so many kids out there, around the world.
And, also, there are so many more opportunities for actors in film coming from theatre - it's just had a really wonderful effect in general, I think.
Oh, yeah - all of it. I remember when I was in PHANTOM, people would say to me after the show, "Oh, we came to see this because we loved Gerard Butler in the film version," and they are just as excited about seeing it as a phan would be, you know?
So, I think that's great that there is such support out there for these things - how can things like that, inspiring people to come and see shows, be a bad thing? What do you think of a responsibility like that? It was a huge risk, but it paid off. For me, fame means nothing - what little I have or don't have, I don't care.
But, if people come to know me through something like that then I am really proud. I am so proud of being a part of that - and also so proud of the work done in it by Sierra and Hadley and the company. So, if that is how people first get to know me or the first time they see me in something? That is such an honor - I am so proud of that show. That was blood, sweat, tears and a lot of care. And, it's amazing that it's had such an afterlife. One more thing I wanted to ask you about was performing both the American and Canadian national anthems at Yankee Stadium a few months ago.
Singleton in The Little Mermaid. After a few years of regional work in the US tour of Les Miserables, Boggess, then just 24 years old, was plucked from obscurity to play the lead role of Ariel in Disney's new stage incarnation of The Little Mermaid. TV appearances, an enormous Disney publicity machine and hordes of fans lining up at stage door for an autograph.
For many, the pressure of tackling such a beloved role in a brand new show - where its success or failure rested squarely on your shoulders - would be immense. For Boggess, her fast-tracked rise to the top and relative greenness meant the opposite was true. Sierra Boggess has appeared on Broadway and on London's West End and is about to perform her first concert tour in Australia.
Simon Schluter "It was my pleasure to do that and carry that show. Sierra Boggess will perform her first Australian tour in June. Simon Schluter After playing Ariel for two years, it was time for her to move on and tackle something new. Her next gig would turn out to be a bigger challenge than she could have expected. The original production is one of the most beloved musicals in the world, and while many expected the news he was continuing the story would be greeted warmlythe backlash against the production was swift and fierce.