by Lorie Lewis Ham
Chicago is coming to Fresno this week and will be performing at the Saroyan Theatre in Fresno on March 3 and 4. KRL had a chance to chat with one of the actors recently about the show, here is our interview with Sam Hartley who plays Billy Flynn.
KRL: Where are you from?
Sam: Lincoln, NE.
KRL: What was the first role that you ever played?
Sam: The Big Bad Wolf in The Three Little Pigs.
KRL: What are some of the roles you have played professionally?
Sam: National Tours of Beauty and the Beast (Beast) and Elf (Buddy).
KRL: Can you share a little bit about the character for those not familiar with the show?
Sam: Billy Flynn is the best criminal defense attorney.
KRL: Were you a fan of the show before this?
Sam: I have loved this music for so long. I saw the movie 3 times in one day.
KRL: What do you like best about playing this role?
Sam: This show has such an incredible legacy in this industry. It’s an honor to be joining the ranks.
KRL: What has been the biggest challenge in playing this role?
Sam: I enter the show about 30 minutes after we start, so staying warmed up and jumping into the momentum of the show can be a little intimidating. But I do get to watch our incredible company perform the Overture/All That Jazz.
KRL: What have you done to prepare for this role?
Sam: We rehearsed in NYC for three weeks, before a week of tech.
KRL: What do you like best about this show?
Sam: The rhythm. It has such a specific tempo from first down beat to final cut off. It’s electrifying.
KRL: What is a typical day like for you while in this touring show?
Sam: We travel in the morning to each new city, and unpack into a new hotel. Generally, there are a few hours to unwind and explore before we meet at the theater as a company.
KRL: Anything else you would like to share?
Sam: I’m excited to return to Fresno after playing in Elf.
You can find more theatre articles, and other entertainment articles, in our Arts & Entertainment section.
If you love local theatre, be sure to check out our new Mysteryrat’s Maze Podcast, which features mysteries read by local actors. You can check the podcast out on Apple Podcasts and Google Play, and also on podbean.