Meet Kerry Fager, who is performing as Barnaby Tucker in Hello, Dolly!. Read on to learn about the rehearsal process, how he is developing his character, and why you should take a chance on this show! LA: Where are you originally from?
KF: I'm a local boy – I grew up in the north metro.
LA: Why did this particular musical interest you?
KF: It wasn’t until watching the film adaptation with Danny Lockin that I decided I liked this show. The catchiness of the songs, the fun characters, and the potential to play a character who has a prominent dance role motivated me to audition.
LA: For those unfamiliar with Hello, Dolly! can you tell us about the show?
KF: Dolly Levi is a self-proclaimed matchmaker who flies by the seat of her dress with an end goal of marrying the tough-as-nails Horace Vandergelder. When two clerks decide they want to get out of their daily routine and experience the city, they're joined by a hat-maker and her assistant in the story. These two storylines blend together in a perfect combination of comedy, romance, drama, and the American spirit.
LA: Talk about the character(s) that you play in Hello, Dolly! How have you developed this character?
KF: Barnaby Tucker is the Robin to Cornelius Hackl's Batman. He's not the brightest bulb in the bunch, but he's more headstrong than Cornelius gives him credit for. Barnaby is the quintessential young gentleman who won't be pushed around, but his lack of street smarts gives people a vibe which sometimes misrepresents his true nature.
LA: Talk about your fellow cast. How do you see their characters developing? Any that you are particularly amazed at?
KF: This cast is extremely talented. Ever since auditions took place, I viewed Beth as the perfect Dolly Levi, and she hasn't disappointed. It's also been fun to see Megan develop her character (Minnie Fay), and see how her relationship with Barnaby progresses throughout the show.
LA: What are some of the most impressive elements of Hello, Dolly!?
KF: The choreography. Jon Michael Stiff is an artistic genius. Whether it's the impeccable timing of a pose, or the story he looks to portray through each dance, he has crafted a masterpiece of movement to music in this production. I’m also stunned in particular by the musical talent of the female principals in this production.
LA: What is your favorite number of the show?
KF: “Dancing” of course! As a trained dancer, I'm biased, but this number is the first instance we see a taste of how I've been allowed to incorporate dance into the personality of my character. The number also contains a key element in the story of the relationship between Barnaby and Minnie.
LA: What is your favorite musical (in theater) to watch?
KF: Do I have to pick one?! It must be West Side Story. I saw it for the first time when I was eight, and I’ve loved it ever since.
LA: What is your all-time favorite karaoke song?
KF: “A Whole New World” (from Aladdin).
LA: What was the first musical you ever saw on stage?
KF: I believe it was Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.
LA: What is your favorite thing about Lyric Arts?
KF: The talent involved in the productions. This is not only in reference to the actors onstage, but the set designers and builders, the costumers, the production coordinators, the musicians, and everything else.
LA: Please tell us a little bit about yourself?
KF: What’s there to know? I’m from a family of seven children. When I’m not performing onstage, I’m working a day job in internet marketing (or running a small business, also in internet marketing).