Spotlight on Kristin Chenoweth

Kristin

Chenoweth

by Nancy Rosati

(part three)

NR:  So now you've got Thoroughly Modern Millie coming up, and you did Annie, and you've got Epic Proportions. What am I missing? It seems like there's lots going on.

KC:  Well ... gosh, there is a lot. I'm going to do a television show next fall for NBC. That's about it. (laughing) I think that's enough. I'm busy. I need a vacation, but I don't want to have one at the expense of not working. This is a wonderful life so I don't want to sound ungrateful, but I do look forward to a break. I look forward to spending time with my family and I haven't had any time off since Steel Pier. So, I need a break.

Epic Proportions
with Alan Tudyk in
Epic Proportions
NR:  That's a long time. What's the TV show about?

KC:  It centers around a guy and a girl, a very strong businessman "Donald Trump-type" person and his young personal assistant, which is me. I didn't really want it to be The Kristin Chenoweth Show. I wanted to surround myself with a very talented group of actors like Seinfeld, Cheers, those kinds of things, because it's a lot of responsibility. If you're around incredible people like this show (Epic Proportions) for instance, it only makes you better.

NR:  Do you have a name for it yet?

KC:  It's untitled. It's actually being written right now.

NR:  And it's going to be on in the fall. Marc told me you're going to be bi-coastal.

KC:  That's right - bi-coastal. Hopefully I'll still get to do Millie. That's still trying to be worked out in my schedule. I'll be really devastated if I don't get to, but there's that chance. They may have to move on. If they get a theater, they've got to take it. But, I'm really hoping because that role is another good example of a marriage of a role to an actor. I really like that part.

NR:  It's great to have all of these projects going at the same time.

KC:  Yeah.

NR:  It's probably too early to ask this, but do you have any idea if you'll want to return to the theater again after your show?

KC:  Oh yeah, of course. Television is great but I'm definitely going to be homesick because I think theater is definitely my home. That's what I'm trained to do. It's like being in class all the time because you learn so much from the audience - sometimes what not to do. (laughs) I will never stray far from it. I will always come back, and you have hiatuses when you're doing a TV show. So, if they'll have me, I'll be back.

NR:  Do you ever just pinch yourself and say, "I can't believe all of this is going on?"

KC:  All the time. I keep saying, "Me? Are you sure they mean me?"

NR:  "This little girl from Oklahoma?"

KC:  Yeah. It's like getting off a train and being on a different planet. I don't mean to sound sappy but I'm really grateful for all the opportunities. It's an actor's dream and I'm very, very thankful for all of it. I continue to learn so much, through television, through doing film, through doing theater. I'm constantly learning, and that is the greatest gift of life in my opinion - to always be learning and growing. That's the wonderful thing about doing acting.

NR:  How are you keeping yourself grounded with all of this swirl going about your head?

KC:  Last year Marc's father passed away, so I was having a wonderful time in my life and he was having a really down time. That's an example of the type of thing that keeps you grounded, that makes you realize what's important, what's truly important. Very rarely, but when I get to see my family, that keeps me grounded. I talk to my mom a lot on a regular basis. I'm not fancy. I'm a very "down to earth" girl. All of this is wonderful but I always like to go back to The Gap and my apartment and rent a movie and eat McDonald's. That's who I am. I always try to keep that realistic.

NR:  I know you have no time at all, but if you could squeeze it in, what do you wish you had time for?

KC:  Well, besides vacation, which we're not talking about, I would really like to do something dramatic, and maybe even an opera. Something operatic that's dramatic. Of course, that would probably have to be written for me again. But I have that side to me. I think every really good comic does, because part of comedy is tragedy. When I was in college, that's all I did. I didn't do these roles. I did Sarah Brown in Guys and Dolls. I did Laurey in Oklahoma. I didn't do the parts that you would think, that I would probably get here. I would love to do that to show that I can. That's one of the reasons that I'm really, really counting on Millie. Millie has so many angles to her, so much to her. She has the dramatic and she has the funny, and she has the sweet side. Also the dancing and the singing is very powerful so it would really combine a lot of my gifts I think. I hope it works out, but that's really what I want to do next.

Epic Proportions
with Ruth Williamson in
Epic Proportions
NR:  Say five years from now, where do you want to be?

KC:  Still working. I don't really have a plan. I know that sounds crazy. I didn't plan this. I still don't have a plan. I'm just sort of going along for the ride. Every actor's fear is that the well's going to go dry. So, what I want to be in five years is still working.

NR:  That's great. Thank you.

KC:  Thank you so much, Nancy.

NR:  My pleasure.

Kristin is constantly in demand and she gives interviews all the time. I'm sure she's answered the same questions hundreds of times, yet you would never know it from the wonderful way in which she responded to me. All of this has happened very fast for her, but she's aware of how fortunate she is to be successful in a field that she loves. It seems that her life is a constant balancing act to try and satisfy the demands on her time, yet keep a few moments for herself and Marc. I'm sure it will become even more demanding next fall when her TV show hits the air, but I have a feeling that this is one girl who's going to do just fine. I hope she doesn't stay away from New York too long, and I know Broadway will be waiting for her with open arms when she returns.


Photo Credit: Carol Rosegg


(continued)

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