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Q & A with Lance Bordelon From Kinky Boots

IN THE January 24 ISSUE

FROM THE 2018 Articles,
andLorie Lewis Ham,
andTales of Diversity,
andTheatre
SECTIONS

by Lorie Lewis Ham

The Tony award winning musical Kinky Boots comes through Fresno next week for two performances at the William Saroyan Theater. Kinky Boots is a musical with music and lyrics by Cyndi Lauper and a book by Harvey Fierstein. We were able to chat recently with one of it’s stars, Lance Bordelon, who plays Charlie Price. theatre

KRL: Where are you from?

Lance Bordelon: I am originally from Scott, Louisiana, which is a small town in South Louisiana. But I am now based in New York City when I am not on the road.

KRL: When did you first become interested in acting?

Lance: I was always a musician most of my life, playing saxophone and clarinet in orchestra and marching bands, even through my college years at Louisiana State University, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. I also grew up singing in church and didn’t sing in front of people until late in high school. I was also a member of competitive speech and debate teams for many years from junior high through college as well, where I became really serious about the study of acting and textual analysis. So…at some point in my time in graduate school studying Public Relations and Advertising at LSU, all of my passions collided. I booked my first acting job on a trip to visit NYC, and I took the leap of faith to pursue acting full time and embark on this career adventure, and haven’t looked back!

kinky boots

Lance Bordelon in the National Tour of “Kinky Boots.”

KRL: Wow that’s quite the path to acting! What was the first role you played?

Lance: The first role I ever played was actually Billy Bigelow in a Louisiana production of Carousel.

KRL: What are some of the roles you have played professionally?

Lance: Favorites include…
Bobby C. (Saturday Night Fever, National Tour & Royal Caribbean International)
Galileo (We Will Rock You, Royal Caribbean International)
Joseph (Joseph…Dreamcoat, Flat Rock Playhouse – Regional Theatre)

KRL: Why did you want to play the role of Charlie?

Lance: Charlie is a real human, a flawed and passionate person. He is constantly trying to move the needle forward, and even though he fails, he is growing and learning through every interaction he shares with the people in his life. This imperfect hero is a very refreshing character to see on stage and one that I feel so lucky to be challenged by and dive into every night.

KRL: What do you like best about playing Charlie?

Lance: I love that ‘what you see is what you get’ with Charlie. He hides very little of his emotions and thoughts from the audience or his peers, and we see him as transparent as he can be at various times in the show. I think this honesty, even when it may hurt him or those in his life, is very refreshing to see in a character on stage. And this honesty is critical in helping him heal some of his own personal wounds and ultimately lead to growth, forgiveness, and acceptance.

KRL: What has been the biggest challenge in playing Charlie?

Lance: Stamina! I have learned that playing a character that is pretty much on stage for two and a half hours requires stamina and complete mental/emotional focus. Which I love! It means I get to dive into this life in the Factory and be immersed in this world and that is very rewarding each night.

KRL: What did you do to prepare for playing the role of Charlie?

Lance: I have increased my physical fitness routines and yoga/meditation to keep a clear mind and endurance to play this role eight times a week, in often multiple cities a week. But also…I remind myself daily that when I enter the Factory and meet Lola each night, that the shared words, emotions, moments, reactions, etc… these are all new and fresh. I try to come into the show without judgments or expectations or anticipations of what will happen each night. As someone who identifies personally with so many aspects of this story, from the familial relationships to being a member of the LGBT community myself, I remind myself each day of two things that help me stay present and organic each night…. 1) You have never heard these words before, this is all new information. And 2) Be honest and tell this story from your heart. More than preparing pre-production, I challenge myself daily with these preparations while out here on the road to stay fresh.

kinky boots

The National Tour of “Kinky Boots.”

KRL: What do you like best about Kinky Boots?

Lance: I love that there is this central, core message of acceptance of people that are simply different from you. This message isn’t bound by race, gender, creed, politics, background….but transcends all social boundaries and simply reminds us that while we don’t all have to agree with each other, this show challenges us to accept each other with respect, always. I think Kinky Boots is successful for many reasons, but I am most proud of the impact of this show because, much like in the spirit of Lola, this show is an open door, open arms, an open heart, and an open conversation about our shared human experiences. And it’s wrapped up in an incredible witty book by Harvey and powerful music by Cyndi. It will entertain just as much as it will make you think.

KRL: What is a typical day like for you while in Kinky Boots?

Lance: A typical day starts with of a couple cups of coffee, a few calls to my fiancé, a good workout and meditation, and hopefully exploring local food!

KRL: Is there anything else you would like to share?

Lance: Come see Kinky Boots for a high-energy, rockin’ and entertaining time, and also the chance to see yourself in someone else’s shoes….well, boots!

Kinky Boots performs in Fresno January 31 and February 1 at the Saroyan Theatre in Fresno. Tickets can be purchased on the Broadway Fresno website.

You can find more theatre articles, and other entertainment articles, in our Arts & Entertainment section.

Lorie Lewis Ham is our Editor-in-Chief and an enthusiastic contributor to various sections, coupling her journalism experience with her connection to the literary and entertainment worlds. Explore Lorie’s mystery writing at Mysteryrat’s Closet.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 Margaret RushtonNo Gravatar
Twitter: @cupcake5858
January 29, 2018 at 9:06am

My daughter saw the musical in Boston when the touring company was there. We loved it.

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