Actor Spotlight for Esley: The Life & Musical Legacy of Lesley Riddle – JJ Ponton (LESLEY RIDDLE)

JJ Ponton is Lesley Riddle
Photo by Rob Storrs. Copyright 2015 Rob Storrs
Q – Why did you decide to audition for Esley?
A – Actually a friend of mine pitched me for the show to Micheal Lilly and he contacted me. I’ve been itching to get on stage again after a year and a half hiatus. However after reading the script from Jeff Messer, I also had to jump at the opportunity to play such an inspirational black man.
Q – What was your favorite moment from rehearsals? 
A – My favorite moment in rehearsal has be when the choir for ‘Working on a Building’ came together. We struggled with it for a long time as a group. One dress rehearsal we finally just circled up and just sang it. Really bringing our soul in it. We added in a special element just to tie it all together, which is our soloist.
Q – Do you have a favorite song in the show?
A – ‘One kind favor’ has to be my favorite song. To me it’s about dealing with your own mortality and the company you keep.
Q – How does it feel playing an actual person? 
A – Of course, playing a man who turns out to be so influential in musical history, yet still has been in the back ground and maintained a humility unlike many people presents a unique challenge to make a character big enough for the stage but still maintain the authenticity and honor the true to life person.
Q – What’s the #1 reason why folks should come see this show? 
A – One should come see this show because we all know the story of the Carter. But this cast, this interpretation presents a unique perspective and but also a truly authentic rendition of the origins of their unique and legendary style.
Come see JJ and the rest of the cast of Esley: The Life & Musical Legacy of Lesley Riddle, running until July 11th!
CLICK HERE to buy tickets now! 
CLICK HERE for a musical preview!
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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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