Posts Categorized: Shrek The Musical

Exclusive Interview with John Tartaglia about Shrek the Musical, Puppets & More

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I’m very excited to announce that today I got to sit down with the king of Puppets and Broadway Star, John Tartaglia.  I’d like to thank John for taking some time to talk with us about the upcoming release of Shrek the Musical on DVD and BluRay next week on 10/15/2013 and about everything from puppets to being different and sending out positive messages to love your self as well as what he has in store with a new TV show from his undersea puppet show.  Below is the video of our interview, a video of his favorite song from Shrek the Musical which is also perfect for National Coming Out Day and National Bullying Month.  Thank you all again for reading and if you get a chance to see his touring show Imaginocean, I highly recommend going.  You should also buy Shrek the Musical on DVD and BluRay when it comes out next week where you’ll see him playing a puppet instead of with a puppet as well as Chris Sieber playing Lord Farquaad.  (I apologize in advance for my hair and everything.  They started doing construction on the apartment above mine so we had to rush to a friend’s apartment to do the interview and didn’t have time to clean up.)  (Also, I didn’t edit the typing, I wrote as I was listening to the interview so I apologize for the typos, grammar and that I didn’t give his full answers.  If you listen to the recording you’ll hear some really cool things that I left out on purpose because you have to hear them from him because they are way more funny coming from him!  Thank you again for reading.)

Here are the questions from the interview with John Tartaglia who plays Pinocchio on Shrek the Musical.  (The answers are cut down versions of the full ones.)

1.  You started playing with a puppet on your hand, then you became a puppet on a string and now you have puppets underwater.  Also, your puppets begin what P (Princeton, Pinocchio, etc…).  What’s going on here?

John:  Chuckles, I never really thought of that.  Princeton, Pinocchio, etc…  He was working on a TV show and went to the audition and was worried about missing the audition and the TV show and freaked out.  Then after the audition he got a call from a friend who said You’re Pinocchio.  He didn’t realize they meant the part of Pinocchio.  What was weird was being a puppet after controlling puppets after so many years.

2.  What was your favorite bloopers from Shrek the Musical?

John:  It would have to be his nose.  The nose worked with a motor and extender and it worked about 90% of the time.  Then at one show it wasn’t working and after we thought it was fixed, it randomly snapped and broke and was just hanging there.  That was a matinee show.  Then all of the sudden that night it broke and happened again.

3.  What is your favorite moment in the show and your OMG moment in Shrek the Musical?

John:  The finale.  It’s the only time we’re all together and the music with the song.  It’s also one of the only times he gets to see Sutton Foster.

4.  In the show there’s a cross dressing wolf, a fairly flamboyant Farquaad and a song called Freak Flag.  What other positive messages of encouragement and empowerment can parents expect to find in the show that can help make their kids and people watching feel better about themselves?

John:  That’s funny that you mention that.  The song Freak Flag is all about being who you are, accepting who you are and that it’s ok to be different.  The princess teaches girls that they don’t have to be perfect and that even a princess has flaws.  Even the most bizarre characters like a cross dressing wolf is ok, that’s just who he is and people should love him anyways.

He then goes on to talk about the production value which unlike other shows that have been filmed was filmed in front of a live audience and with 10 cameras.  It is a real production that can help you feel like you’re actually at a show.  It is going to be amazing.

5.  What did you do as an Actor to help audiences who may not have seen a ton of shows realize which broadway shows you were making fun of or spooking?

John:  John talks about the different shows like Wicked, A Chorus Line, Pippin and other shows that were somewhat obvious but only a broadway fan would get.  I’m glad you noticed and brought it up.  Having the spoofs of other shows will hopefully help get more people out to broadway shows and to start to see more theatre.

6.  Is Imaginocean going to tour again or what do you have in the works?

John:  Actually yes, we’re turning it into a TV show and we’re starting to film shortly.  It’ll hopefully be live within the next few years.

7.  What is your favorite moment in Shrek the Musical and what should everyone watching look for?

John:  Gosh it changes so much.  He talks for a while and really gets you excited about it but ends with Freak Flag being the best moment.  It is the one time in the show where everyone no matter how tired or worn out they were always energizes everyone, gets everyone ready to go and brings out the energy in everyone.

I’d like to thank John Taraglia again for taking time to talk with me today and to share what Shrek the Musical is about for him, what he is working on and even where he gets some of his cabaret music which can be anything from a ballad to something funny or anything in between.  I hope you all go out next week and buy Shrek the Musical on BluRay and DVD as well as watch Imaginocean when it goes on TV and the tour when it tours.   Thank you all again for reading.

Here is John Tartaglia playing Pinocchio in his favorite part of the show and song Freak Flag from Shrek the Musical.

Special Interview with Chris Sieber (Beiber with an S) about Shrek The Musical on DVD

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I’m very excited to share an interview we just did with one of the stars of Shrek The Musical which is about to become available on DVD and BluRay, Chris Sieber. Before we talk about the interview, I want to thank Chris for taking the time to talk to us, and I encourage you all to buy Shrek the Musical on DVD and BluRay when it comes out later this month. We also have another special guest interview with another star from the show tomorrow, so come back and see what this well known and amazing Actor has to say. (The performance of the song he talks about is at the bottom of the post.  It’s not the actual performance but is of the song he performed.)  (I apologize for the low sound quality coming from the phone.  The microphone and speakers did not connect well.  When we post the second interview later today or on Monday we’ll make sure to have the phone speakers or recording speakers closer to the iPad.)

Here is our phone interview with Chris Sieber about Shrek the Musical and his role as Lord Farquaad. (The sounds breaks up at certain points so I have the questions below.)

1. What was it like going from a dramatic knight to a drama king/queen to a Drag Queen?

Chris got a laugh out of this (Thank god) and talked about how the characters can have some similarities.  He thought it was very funny that he’s always playing royalty in different broadway shows.  He plays kings, queens, princes and recently did a stand in in Pippin which was amazing.  He played an evil King for about 2 to 3 weeks within the show.  The main difference between love in his roles as different royalty in the Drag Queen vs. the Drama Queen is that the Drama Queen was more in love with Felonious.

2. Shrek the Movie makes fun of a lot of movies, tv shows and fairy tales. Shrek the Musical makes fun of a lot of Broadway shows. Your character in particular has a moment where you spoof one of the most iconic moments from the hit musical Wicked where you mimic Elphaba in her high note during Defying Gravity. What challenges did you have as an Actor and what did you do to try and help the audiences get some of the Broadway Show spoofs, if the audience members have not have seen a ton of shows.

Chris was very honest with this answer. He talked about there being only so much that an Actor can do and then you have to hope for the best. If you listen, he even performs how he did it at rehersal and why that performance is how that part was added into the show.  The main thing is that they have a group of amazing Actors and fun people, the full support of Dreamworks so when he went and tried to hit the high note as a joke, everyone laughed for about 30 minutes non-stop.  From that point on the high note became part of Lord Farquaad’s character and role.

3. The cast of Shrek the Musical is made up of some of the most funny and talented people on Broadway. The movie and show is all about imagination, creativity and having fun. With this much talent and energy, what was your favorite blooper from the show either on or off stage.

Chris talked about getting ready for the curtain to go up and all of the sudden Lord Farquaad’s legs breaking. He instantly called for the Stage Manager and said his legs were broken. Unfortunately everyone thought it was Chris’s legs and not Lord Farquaad’s legs. Everyone rushed around worried that he was hurt and eventually they found out it was the character and not him. They gave him the spare legs and the curtain went up about 5 minutes later. His version is much funnier if you can hear it.  (You can see a video of the routine below at the Tony Awards and why broken legs wouldn’t work.)

4. We were running out of time so I asked one last question. What is your favorite thing about Shrek the Musical on DVD and BluRay, the show and what should people look for?

Chris: “Me! Just kidding.” The thing people will enjoy is that the film crew captured the show like you are actually at the show. You’ll love the costumes and everything about the production.

I snuck in one last question which was a favor for one of our readers. Can you please say hi to Mr. Sean C. Huff?

Chris: Sean C. Huff? Hi Sean C. Huff, Chris Sieber here.

I’d like to thank Chris Sieber for the interview again and taking time out of his day. Tomorrow we have another interview with another Actor from the cast of Shrek the Musical. I encourage you all to go out and buy a copy of Shrek the Musical on DVD and BluRay and thank you again for your time Chris.

miss adams morgan pageant

We Let Our Freak Flags Fly – Shrek – Check Out The Pictures Inside

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Last weekend was The Miss Adams Morgan Pageant that takes place in Washington DC each year. Unlike other drag shows or pageants, this one is a star studded event with over 1,000 people showing up in drag, ridiculous costumes and insane outfits. If there was an appropriate event for a Freak Flag to Fly like in the showtune from the musical Shrek, this is the event where you can let your Freak Flag Fly. Our table’s theme this year was Greek Gods and Goddesses, but the theme of the 2013 Miss Adams Morgan Pageant was Asia and Silver. Asia because of the olympics, which I don’t understand, and silver because it was their 25th anniversary. Also, the reason I said Miss Adams Morgan Pageant 2013 instead of 2012 is because they crown the winner for the next year so this year is technically 2012 but it is the pageant to crown Miss Adams Morgan 2013. I couldn’t figure out what to do with my costume for Asia or Silver and I didn’t really want to do the Greek Theme so I was originally going to fill huge boobs up with pingpong balls and have a dress made of paddles, but instead I figured out something a bit more ridiculous. I went with the silver theme and completely overdid it.

I ended up finding and falling in love with a silver and white dress that I turned into a ghost. I added a silver and somewhat shiny Marie Antoinette wig, silver jewelry, white beads and painted my face with white powder, black eye makeup, red blush, eye shadow and lipstick to create a dead Marie Antoinette. I decided to keep her head on though and gave her vampire fangs for fun. Shrek the musical would have been proud of everyone at the 2013 Miss Adams Morgan Pageant because everyone let their Freak Flag Fly and had an awesome time.

There were insane drag outfits. Greek gods, chinese takeout boxes, muscle bears dressed as pandas, Phylis Diller even made an appearance from the dead with her sequins outfit, crazy hair and cigarette holder in hand. The only thing missing was the drag queen wolf from the musical Shrek who let his Freak Flag Fly as well. The pageant is an awesome annual event and if you are lucky enough to meet one of the drag queens that are performing and you can get a ticket, I definitely recommend you going. It’s the perfect reason to go crazy and have an insane costume, party with your friends and then go crazy in DC showing off your outfit. Here are a couple of photos of me at the Miss Adams Morgan Pageant in DC.

miss adams morgan pageant

miss adams morgan pageant 2012

miss adams morgan pageant 2012

Are You Waiting for Love – I Know It’s Today from Shrek The Musical

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I’ve been going on a bunch of dates lately and doing the opposite of what I always thought. That instead of chasing and trying to find love, it would come find me again. Unfortunately I’ve come to the realization that I can meet some great people on dating sites, and although trying to find someone is fun….and a waste of time other nights, You can’t find love. You have to wait for it to come to you. With that said, at the same time, that doesn’t mean you should sit around and hope that it comes soon. You can do other things to help it find you.

You can go to parties and events, as well as have drinks with friends for a happy hour. You never know when you’re going to meet someone. The only way to meet a person is by being out there. You don’t have to force love to come to you, but you do have to at least make a move. That’s why I love the showtune I Know It’s Today from Shrek the Musical.

The song sort of reminds me of Happily Ever After from Once Upon a Mattress because it is about being bitter and goes through everyone else’s love and all of the other princesses finding their princess or having their princess rescue them. When Fiona sings I Know It’s Today from Shrek the Musical, she is singing to her stuffed animals about Sleeping Beauty, Rapunzel and everyone else who she eventually meets in person and becomes friends with. The only problem is she is getting lonely as she grows older and is somewhat questioning if her prince will come for her.

It’s sort of like when you go on a few bad dates and it just seems pointless because everyone out there is getting worse and worse and you just keep getting older and older. The truth is that you just need to not give up if you really want to find love, because eventually it will find you. Some people don’t find it until they are in their 50’s and some find it when they are teenagers. You just have to be patient and you cannot focus on everyone else’s story. What you need to do is think of your own and wait for your true love to come find you, after you let him or her know how. Love is sort of like fate.

If you are meant to find love, you will find it. At the same time, even if you don’t find true love and the person you will be married to for the rest of your life, you can still have other times of love where you are with someone you honestly love, even if it doesn’t work out. It hurts when you break up, but the hurt feelings do go away and you’ll be able to fall in love again. I love the song I Know It’s Today from Shrek the Musical because it reminds me of going on dating sites and realizing that they just aren’t working. I know eventually I’ll meet the right person but until then, I’m going to continue to have fun and hopefully meet a great guy before then.