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Bruins on Broadway

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By Mary Daily, Illustrations by Brett Affrunti, Photos by Bleacher + Everard

Published Jan 1, 2011 8:30 AM


art

La Cage aux Folles is among the many Broadway shows that have featured Bruins.

Supporting Cast

All theater alumni remember the freshman orientation meeting where they were told to look to the left and to the right. "These are the people you're going to be with in the industry," they heard. "They'll be your directors, designers and co-stars and the people hiring you."

"The 65 people you meet in Freshman Experience become your core group — the people you travel with in your career, your business relationships, for the rest of life," says Sternberg.

And they believe in one another. When Egan brought her "Belle" performance to Los Angeles, the show's producers had difficulty finding someone to replace her in New York. Egan sent them across the street to see her UCLA roommate, Sarah Uriarte '92, in Les Miserables. Uriarte succeeded her as Belle.

The community spans decades, too. While a student, Egan received a $500 Carol Burnett Scholarship, which enabled her to get headshots for her portfolio. A decade later, she found herself onstage with the comedienne at the Mark Taper Forum in a play called Putting It Together. Before Egan had a chance to approach Burnett to thank her, Burnett found her and said, "I'm so excited to meet you."

"She's gold," Egan says.

Plenty of people would say that about plenty of the performers in this theater company. True to Bruin form, many alumni give back to the world what was given to them. Taylor Sternberg teaches improv to teens through Actors Technique, NY. Kristin Hanggi has a small business, the Creative Gym, where she conducts seminars to help writers launch and execute their ideas. And last summer, Susan Egan taught musical theater at the U.S. Performing Arts Camp at UCLA for high school kids.

"It's fun to pass the torch," she says. "Going into UCLA, I never thought it would be more than a four-year experience, but it becomes a part of who you are."

More Bruins on Broadway

Nate Bolotin M.F.A. '07, producer, American Psycho
Carol Burnett, writer, Hollywood Arms; actor, Moon Over Buffalo, Fade Out-Fade In, Once Upon a Mattress
Susan Egan, actor, Beauty and the Beast, Cabaret, Thoroughly Modern Millie, Triumph of Love, State Fair
Meg Friedman '06, stage manager, The Story of My Life, Fela!, Memphis
Dan Gordon '69, writer, Irena's Vow
Sala Iwamatsu, actor, Avenue Q, Rent, Miss Saigon
Judy Kaye, actor, Souvenir, Sweeney Todd, Mamma Mia!, Ragtime, The Phantom of the Opera, Oh, Brother!, The Mooney Shapiro Songbook, On the Twentieth Century, Grease
Kristin Hanggi '98, director, Rock of Ages
Tom Lenk '98, actor, Rock of Ages
Heather Lindell '04, actor, Hairspray, La Cage aux Folles
John Rando M.F.A. '88, director, A Thousand Clowns, Urinetown, The Dinner Party, The Wedding Singer, Dance of the Vampires, Broken Glass
John Rubinstein, actor, Pippin, Children of a Lesser God, Fools, The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial, Hurlyburly, M. Butterfly, Getting Away with Murder, Love Letters, Ragtime
Robert Sella '85, actor, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Side Man, Cabaret, My Fair Lady
Thomas Schumacher '80, producer, The Lion King, Mary Poppins, Aida, The Little Mermaid, Tarzan, King David; currently president, Disney Theatrical Group
Taylor Sternberg '06, actor, Jersey Boys
Michael Stuhlbarg, actor, The Pillowman, The Invention of Love, Cabaret, Taking Sides, The Government Inspector, Timon of Athens, Three Men on a Horse, Saint Joan
Abe Sylvia M.F.A. '06, dancer, Cats, The Producers
Clarke Thorell, actor, Hairspray, Titanic, The Who's Tommy, Mamma Mia!
Sarah Uriarte Berry '92, actor, Les Miserables, Beauty and the Beast, Taboo, The Light in the Piazza

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