Hailing from Grapevine, TX, Allison Rogers is thrilled and proud to be making her Off-Broadway debut at the Public Theater. Her theatrical credits include: "Thoroughly Modern Millie" (Miss Dorothy), "Camelot" (Guenevere), "Singin' in the Rain" (Lina Lamont), "Crazy For You" (Polly), "The Women" (Peggy), "Sweeney Todd," and "A Christmas Carol" (Casa Manana). Allison holds a BFA in theater from Abilene Christian University.
Now, Allison will be making her Off-Broadway debut with Public Theater's production of "Giant," directed by Michael Greif, with a book by Sybille Pearson, and Music/Lyrics by Michael John LaChiusa. According to press notes, "Based on the classic novel by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Edna Ferber, "Giant" is a new American musical that spans generations in an epic chronicle of the state that’s like no place else on earth: Texas. Amid a turbulent culture of greed, bigotry, and money, a powerful cattleman, his new East Coast bride, their family and friends – not to mention their enemies – embrace and confront the joys and sorrows that loom as large as the state they call home." "Giant" will play The Public Theater (425 Lafayette Street) from October 26-December 2). In addition to Allison, the cast includes Kate Baldwin, Brian D'Arcy James, John Dossett, Michele Pawk, Bobby Steggert, and Katie Thompson. Click here for tickets! and follow the show on Facebook and Twitter!
1. Who or what inspired you to become a performer? My mom - she got us hooked on the classics early on "7 Brides for 7 Brothers," "Singin' in the Rain," "Summer Stock," "Sound of Music," and "Camelot" were favorites. I wanted to be Julie Andrews. My first professional production to ever see was the national tour of "Crazy For You," and after that I had to be a part of it.
2. Who haven't you worked with that you would like to? I've been running through people in my head and I can't narrow it down. I'm a fan of so many. I'm really excited to work with Brian D'Arcy James though on this particular project!
3. What attracted you to "Giant"? I auditioned because it was DTC and I thought it'd be fun to go home for a while! Then for the callback I read the script (I hadn't seen the movie sadly) and I fell in love with the story. It represented my home, my "country", and these characters were the people I knew and my ancestors so I felt a very personal connection to it.
4. What do you hope audiences come away with after seeing the show? I hope they are moved in some way, otherwise we're doing something wrong. It's an epic story about family with beautifully flawed characters and incredible music that I believe everyone can relate to.
5. "Giant" premiered in your hometown of Dallas, TX. What did it mean to you to perform back home and make your Dallas Theater Center debut? It was amazing! Being home where my family and friends could share the experience with me after what was one of my most difficult years in NY was more than I could ask for - it was an incredibly happy time for me. And working at DTC was a little dream come true.
6. Now "Giant" will be making it's NYC premiere at The Public Theater. What excites you about making your Off-Broadway debut in this show? It's a show that I love and am very proud of. And it's being a part of an original cast and crew and creating roles that haven't been performed here before - that's exciting!
7. What is your favorite part of the rehearsal/preview period in a show? Where is your favorite place to rehearse on your own? My favorite rehearsal day with every musical I've done is the sitzprobe! Hearing the full orchestrations with the voices for the first time is so exhilarating! But the overall process of discovering your character and watching other actors find theirs and working them together to tell one story - It sounds cheesy but it's so much fun - seeing people laugh or cry for the first time and you know something special is happening. You learn so much by just watching people!
On my own, I really hate knowing that other people can hear me, so I avoid practicing in my apartment and sing in my car when I can:) But if that's not an option, I'll rent a studio in the city so at least I know I'm not too annoying to people around me because they're there for the same reason!
8. When we met, you were a dresser on Broadway. What made you want to be a dresser and what did you enjoy about this aspect of theatre as opposed to the performing side of it? I didn't really want to be a dresser, honestly, but I believe things happen for a reason, and I knew it was a way to learn a different side of the business but still remain very connected to it. It provided me with a good income and the flexibility I needed for auditioning, so it was really perfect. Another plus was getting to know so many people in the business with each show without there being that underlying sense of competition that you can have when in an audition setting. I think it's always valuable to learn as many sides to the business your in as possible, so you can understand each other. I know that these experiences I've had working in wardrobe will actually make me a better performer, and hopefully a better friend and co-worker. And I will always be kind to my costumes!
9. What have you learned about yourself from being a performer? That I don't like quitting, even if I should;) And that I can't do this on my own. I doubt I'd be answering these questions for you right now if I hadn't had crazy constant support from my husband and family.
10. What's the best advice you've ever received? I have two I keep coming back to. 1) Bloom where you're planted. 2) If it wasn't difficult, it wouldn't be worth doing.
11. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? Ha! Well I believe the correct answer is my husband, Jeff;) But in all seriousness, I am incredibly lucky because I actually did somehow manage to marry my dream guy, so I don't find myself dreaming of anyone else in particular... just the random celeb that I somehow became besties with;)
12. Favorite way to spend your day off? On a nice day, have a backyard bbq with some good friends. On a rainy or cold day, have a TV or movie marathon with the hubby over pizza and wine.
13. Favorite way to stay in shape? Dancing is fun. I enjoy rebounding, water skiing, tennis, and swimming but don't get to do them enough. But really my daily workouts are more of a "have to" than a "want to."
14. Favorite skin care product? My MAC tinted moisturizer with SPF 15. Love it.
15. If you could have any super power, which one would you choose? Flying, duh.