Performer Stuff Presents “In the Holding Room” Industry Podcast Episode 14

Written by: Christiaan Abbott

May 13th, 2021

Performer Stuff continues with episode 14 of the podcast “In the Holding Room.” The podcast, hosted by Christiaan Abbott, features industry insiders and Broadway professionals to help you crush your next audition! New episodes drop on Performer Stuff every Wednesday.

Episode Summary

Kim Criswell, Broadway and West End star tells us about some of her early auditions to get her equity card, as well as what it was like auditioning for Andrew Lloyd Webber to land the role of Grizabella in Cats. My “Thank You 5” segment is about how memorizing a deck of cards can help you in your acting career. In “Professor’s Corner” this week, three-time Olivier Award winner and Tony-nominated choreographer for Mary Poppins, Stephen Mear, gives his advice not only for auditions but for the rehearsal process as well.

Intro to this Episode

In this episode of “In The Holding Room,” we are thrilled to be joined by the amazing Kim Criswell.  Kim’s Broadway credits include starring as Lucy, opposite Sting, in The Threepenny Opera directed by John Dexter, and appearing in the original Broadway cast of the 1982 Best Musical Tony winner Nine, first as Francesca, then taking over the leading role of Claudia. Other Broadway original cast credits include The First, Baby, and Stardust. On the West Coast, she was the original Grizabella in Cats, singing “Memory” at the Shubert Theatre in Los Angeles, and also appeared as Lalume in Kismet for Opera Pacific.  She starred in the original West End productions of Elegies for Angels, Punks and Raging Queens and The Slow Drag, as well as the revival of Dames At Sea, and as the Mother Abbess in the acclaimed production of The Sound of Music at the Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris. Critically acclaimed for playing Annie Oakley in Annie Get Your Gun at London’s Prince of Wales Theatre, for which she earned an Olivier Award nomination for Best Actress in a Musical, and for her role as The Old Lady in Robert Carsen’s productions of Candide at La Scala and the Théâtre du Châtelet, she has also won a Helen Hayes Award for her work in Side by Side by Sondheim. She was most recently seen in the US starring as Sally Adams in Call Me Madam at the Goodspeed Opera House, singing the role of The Old Lady in Candide at Chicago’s Ravinia Festival, and co-starring with Joseph Fiennes and Charles Edwards in Happy Days in the Art World at NYU’s Skirball Center in New York. Recently, she played the Italian opera singer Mrs. Castellari in the feature film Hysteria (2013) opposite Maggie Gyllenhaal, Hugh Dancy, and Jonathan Pryce.

In “Thank you 5” this week, I talk about a silly game you can play to improve your ability as a performer. This one game will sharpen your mind and help you with imagination, association, and memorization.

Stephen Mear C.B.E. is joining us in “Professor’s Corner” this week to offer his advice not only on auditioning but for the rehearsals process as well.  Honorary Doctor of Arts and three-time Olivier Award Winner, Tony Nominated Stephen Mear has been described by the Daily Telegraph as “The old-style master of the modern chorus line.” Stephen’s prolific career has taken him in all directions from musical theater on Broadway and the West End to opera at the ENO, Paris, and the Met in New York. His varied and sought-after talent extends to well know TV programs as well, such as So You Think You Can Dance, and The Tracy Ullman Show.

Click on the video below to watch “In the Holding Room” Episode 14

Click below to listen to all available episodes: