The King & I Actor Spotlight – Myra McCoury as Tuptim

photo (3)Q: Why did you audition for The King & I?

MM: I auditioned for The King and I because I love the music. Any time there’s an opportunity to audition for a Rodgers and Hammerstein show, do it! The music is simply, and unbeatably classic.

Q: What shows might people have seen you in before?

MM: Before The King and I, I have been seen as Peter in Parkway’s 2013 production of Peter Pan, as well as Helena Landless in The Mystery of Edwin Drood. Aside from many other shows at the playhouse where I have participated as an ensemble member or dancer, I have been seen in the High Country Youth Ballet’s production of the Nutcracker countless times, playing Clara in the 2010 production, and the Dew Drop Fairy in the 2011 production.

Q: What is a typical day like for you?

MM: During the school year I attend Appalachian State University where I’m double majoring in English, Secondary education, as well as Theater Education. This summer I spent most of my days in June taking summer classes until rehearsal for the King and I started.

Q: Have you met new friends in the cast?

MM: I knew most everyone involved in the production prior to rehearsal having been in shows with many of them before. I am thrilled that I am able to work with many of these friends again that I don’t normally see during the Fall and Spring.

Q: What has been your favorite moment from rehearsals?

MM: My favorite moment of rehearsal hasn’t occurred yet, but it will when we (the ensemble) successfully repeat the King during his chant at the end of Act One.

Q: What is your favorite line or song from the show?

MM: My favorite song from the show has always been Lady Thiang’s song, “Something Wonderful.” Before actually being in this show, one of my favorite songs to listen to on a reel was Julie Andrews singing “Something Wonderful.” It may be just an ad for the King in the context of the show, but it can’t be denied that it was very beautifully written.

Q: Are there people in your life who have never seen you on stage?

MM: Most everyone in my life has seen me on stage before; however, they are used to seeing me in more comedic or character roles. I am excited for them to see me in different role where I will be singing higher than I have ever sang in my entire life!

Q: At what age did you first know you wanted to act?

MM: I first knew I wanted to act when I was in Parkway’s 2005 production of Oliver! I was 10. I have always been found doing impressions and have loved mimicking others. When my mom decided to try out this new outlet for me, it was a definite fit.

Q: What’s the #1 reason someone should see this show?

MM: Families should come and see this show, not only because it’s a classic, but because it brings to Burnsville a drastically different culture, another age, a story where two worlds come together in the making of beautiful music, dance, romance, laughter, and the humbling of a King.

Q: If you could appear onstage with any classic actor or actress, who would it be and why?

MM: If I could appear on stage with any classic actor or actresses I would have to make it a three way tie between Julie Andrews, Carol Burnett, and Carol Channing. Julie Andrews is basically the Queen of musical theatre, and the two Carols are two of my all time favorite comics, as well as women of Broadway.

Q: What is it like to work on a Rodgers and Hammerstein production?

MM: Rodgers and Hammerstein shows are, in a word, grand. They almost always require a large cast, crew, setting, and orchestra. With all of these aspects, as an actor, it makes me step up my game, challenge myself, and set many more goals to tell the story through the music, dance, and dialogue that was written.

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Parkway Playhouse, located in the Appalachian town of Burnsville, NC, is a haven of theatre talent. While people come to the mountains to get away, Parkway Playhouse is a natural gathering place to connect. Likewise, we are an extension of traditional mountain talents: singing, dancing, and, foremost, storytelling. By giving rise to energetic new voices and through a wide variety of plays and musicals, we invite our audience into experiences that are thought-provoking, adventurous, and entertaining. Together we reimagine the world in every live performance, creating dynamic conversations that last far beyond the curtain call. This blog is will feature stories, helpful information, insight and features about the performances.

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