Theatre Talk Thursday: Which character from a musical would you most like to hang out with?

When talking about a musical with friends, it is almost inevitable that eventually talk will turn to “So, who is your favorite character?”  Sure, everyone has a favorite musical character, but what if that character were a real person?  Would you actually want to hang out with them?  Would you shoot the breeze with Mrs. Lovett from Sweeney Todd?  Catch a few drinks with Les Miserables Grantaire?  There are endless possibilities, and it was with that in mind that we asked: Which character from a musical would you most like to hang out with?

Lin-Manuel Miranda as Usnavi in "In The Heights."

Lin-Manuel Miranda as Usnavi in “In The Heights.”

Sam, founder and editor-in-chief

Choosing just one character to hang out with is nearly impossible. How fun would it be to hang out at a peace rally with Claude and Berger (Hair), attend a cocktail party with Holly Golightly (Breakfast at Tiffany’s) or film a movie with Mark (Rent)? But when I really start to think which characters I could spend an entire day with and still walk away loving them just as much, or even more, two men come to mind before any others. I would love to spend a day on the barrio with Usnavi, Vanessa, Sonny and the rest of the In The Heights gang. My mother was born in the Dominican Republic so not only would it be a lot of fun to dance and rap (albeit, poorly) with Usnavi but I think it would be a great opportunity for me to get in touch with my heritage. On the other hand, and a bit more mischievous, I’d also love to spend a day chasing down a trunk of star stuff with my favorite pirate. As much as I cheer for Peter and the Starcatcher‘s  Boy and Molly, I can’t help but love the devious yet ill-fated Black Stache and I’d love to take to the high seas chasing down treasure.

Alan, managing editor

If I had to choose a musical character to hang out with, I think it would be Sky Masterson from Guys and Dolls. He’s an inveterate gambler, snappy dresser, handily moves between high and low society and is a real ladies’ man. He also has plenty of money and a plane that goes to Cuba. Talk about your perfect wingman. If Sky can sing and charm Sarah Brown then there’s hope for most. All that being said, Sky would still be a cool-as-hell guy to hang out with and knock back a few drinks together. And he would know everything about 1930’s New York, which would be fascinating to talk about.

Killian Donnelly as Combeferre.

Killian Donnelly as Combeferre in “Les Miserables.”

Monte, creative director

Picking a character to hang out with is actually rather hard for me, because while I have a lot of favorite characters, there aren’t very many that I could see myself hanging out with for any length of time without wanting to tell them to just shut up or something of that sort.  However, I think I would pick Combeferre from Les Miserables.  For me, one of the best things I can do with a friend is just curl up on opposite ends of a sofa or of a room with a book each, and read in silence for a few hours.  It’s doubly good if they can also discuss whatever they’re reading because I require a lot of intellectual stimulation, and so if the person I’m hanging out with is willing to have in-depth discussions about literature (or anything else really), then chances are I can enjoy myself with them, and Combeferre definitely brings that kind of ability to the table.

The Jets and the Sharks from "West Side Story."

The Jets and the Sharks from “West Side Story.”

Josh, columnist

I would love to hang out with the Jets from West Side Story. How fun would it be to prowl around the streets, singing and dancing and snapping and whistling and calling each other “buddy boy”? Minus the knife fights, I think that would be a New York night well spent. If they were busy, I would totally creep on Tony and Maria professing their love for each other in the middle of the night, mainly because there’s something ridiculously chill-inducing about sunsets and fire escape escapades in New York City.

Wendi, multimedia reporter

I would love to spend the day with Maureen from RENT. We would have such a fun time. Maureen is so fun and eclectic, she can make a party out of anything. I think we would get along wonderfully, we could have some drinks, hang out, maybe get on some tables and dance La Vie Boheme style, and of course there’s the inevitable moo-ing to protest some form of discrimination. We could also flirt with some women in rubber, as there will always be women in rubber flirting with her. All in all, she would be such an exciting person to hang out with.

Elle Woods from "Legally Blonde."

Elle Woods from “Legally Blonde.”

Claire, writer

This question is tough! There are about a thousand characters I’d like to hang out with! After a long hard debate (but not really, because if I actually debated this long and hard it would take me hours), I’m going to choose Elle Woods from Legally Blonde. I love that she is a smart, independent woman who knows that there’s no shame in loving the color pink. When I feel like I’ve hit a wall in the stress department and have mountains of academic work ahead of me, I try to channel my inner Elle to motivate me because she takes tackles hard work with such positivity and flair. So basically, I’d want to not only hang out with Elle, but be her BFF and absorb some of her fantastic attitude.

Amelia, writer

I am a big history nerd, so if I could hang out with the 2nd Continental Congress from 1776, I’d be super down with that. I geek out over John Adams and Thomas Jefferson on a regular basis and even though their characters are romanticized for dramatic purposes in the musical, I still think they are great men who I would love to spend a day with. Their words and ideals put the future and creation of this country into motion. If only I could have been a fly on the wall during the singing of the Declaration of Independence.

Judas from "Jesus Christ Superstar."

Judas from “Jesus Christ Superstar.”

Lucy, intern

A character that seems to be an unusual choice jumped out at me – Judas Iscariot from Jesus Christ Superstar. I’m a theology student, and so it only makes sense that Jesus Christ Superstar is one of my favorite musicals of all time. Judas has become an absolute dream role of mine (despite the fact that I’m a girl), and his character is incredibly complex. The musical really explores the person of Judas, as we are not presented with too much about his character in the Bible. Even if it is a completely incorrect portrayal, I find Judas in Jesus Christ Superstar extremely fascinating. I’ve always been particularly interested in the person of Jesus, so Judas would probably be great to debate with on that.  I’d also love to debate politics with him, due to the heated political climate of first century Jerusalem. As well as all of that, who wouldn’t love a duet of “Superstar,” the most famous number from the show?

Megan, intern

I really struggled with this week’s topic, because let’s be real, I would gladly hang out with any of the barricade boys, especially Bahorel. However, in the end, I think I’d like to hang out with Jason from Bare: A Pop Opera. I’m a little bit obsessed with this show right now, so that probably has something to do with my decision. I don’t want to spoil anybody, but if I could hang out with Jason for a while, I think I’d drag him to a baseball game or something and then tell him (and oh, God, it’s about to get really cheesy in here) that things get better and that he’s loved and he’s got a lot to live for. And that there’s absolutely nothing to be ashamed of. Then we’d just relax, watch some baseball, and it would be such a good time, because Jason’s funny, intelligent and outgoing, and probably one of my favorite characters.

Erika, intern

If I had the chance to hang out with a character from a musical, I would want to hang out with Jean Prouvaire from Les Miserables. I think that Jehan, with his optimistic, whimsical attitude, would be a wonderful friend, and one that I would really enjoy hanging out with!  Knowing his back story, as well as that he has a love of poetry and music, I think we would have lots in common, and would have an overall great time. Lastly, one of the greatest things about him, I think, is that although he is described as soft-spoken and at times timid, he is also fearless and adventurous.


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