Interview with Flashdance actress Patricia Bartlett, who returns to the Schuster for 'ONCE' Jan 19-24.
It’s the power of song that conjoins the hearts of an Irish musician and a Czech immigrant in ‘ONCE’ and is also what mesmerizes the audience in the new Tony award winning musical. Set in a bar, the show displays the emotions behind some of the song’s lyrics as the couple collaborates for a week. ‘ONCE’ will make its area debut at the Schuster Center on January 19 through 24.
The musical is based on the 2007 Academy Award winning film, ‘ONCE.’ Viewers of the film will recognize the story, but with more in depth details. “This production is able to flesh out the characters more than in the movie and feature some deeper storylines. The ability to make it more personal is part of the magic of theatre,” said Patricia Bartlett, who plays the Czech immigrants mother.
Bartlett was on the Schuster Center stage just last year in ‘Flashdance,’ and is thrilled to be returning. ‘Flashdance’ is similar to ‘ONCE’ in the fact that the staged productions of each broadens storylines more than the movies.
The leading players in ‘ONCE’ are only ever referred to as Guy and Girl, no names are given. Being a witness to their tremendous talents is one of Bartlett’s greatest joys from being a part of the production. She marvels at the voice of Sam Cieri ‘Guy’ and the tremendous range of Mackenzie Lesser-Roy whose skill level far outweighs her years. “They are two of the most fantastic, talented people that I have ever met,” said Bartlett.
The entire cast of ‘ONCE’ are skilled musicians as they provide all the instrumentals as well as vocals throughout the show. Each cast member must play a variety of different instruments. “There is no pit music, we are the pit,” said Bartlett.
The senior member of the cast, Bartlett recently returned to the stage after taking some time off to be a mother. She was originally an opera singer before expanding her land of opportunity by becoming involved in musical theatre. Once she became accomplished in community theatre, she again widened her spectrum and is excited to be in her second national tour.
The winner of eight Tony Awards, including Best Musical in 2012 and winner of the 2013 Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album will play at the Schuster Center, Jan. 19 – 24. For more information, visit see "ONCE The Musical"