Being an Actor/Musician

Shakespeare utilized the actor/musician role 

and now it’s making a comeback!

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Shakespeare made frequent use of actor/musicians as skilled artists to more fully enrich the worlds and stories he created. It was also a necessity of the times. Now with the incredible technical prowess showcased in Broadway musicals all over, it would seem that the time of utilizing just onstage performers for the instrumental elements of a show has passed. But there has been a surprising resurgence in the demand for this level of theatre. 

The hit musical Once was certainly a recent catalyst. Elizabeth A. Davis who played Reza in the Broadway production and received a Tony Award nomination for that role joined me on the podcast in episode 69 – though in that interview we focused more on her work as Goneril in King Lear.

Ryan McCurdy is a New-York based Actor/Musician, Music Director, and Music Supervisor who has worked on Broadway, Off-Broadway, and regionally at Rattlestick Playwrights, Manhattan Theatre Club, Second Stage, Hudson Valley Shakespeare, and HERE amongst others. He is a twelve-instrument singer/songwriter and co-founder of the rock band Bonfire Falls, and teaches voice, piano, and guitar privately in Manhattan. In this episode, we dive into the crossover elements from music training to acting as well as the future of this type of theatrical convention. If you’re an actor looking to not only expand your artistic capabilities but offer directors something unique, listen to Ryan’s tips. 

Resources In this Episode:





Jess Grippo

You Can Dance Again