Street Theatre Company’s upcoming production of the popular musical Hairspray is nearing the end of rehearsals. The fine folks at the theatre made time to talk with me. In today’s green room article we meet Michael Holder.
Michael, you’re playing Link Larkin, the heart-throb dancer. Tell us about your history.
I moved to Nashville in 2008. I’m from Illinois, but moved here from New York to be with my fiancee who is in graduate school. We love it here. Nashville has that city feel and the getaway-to-nothing element: it’s the best of both worlds.
Have you done much theatre work here in town?
Hairspray is my third show in Nashville. I did Rent at the Boiler Room and then Chess here at Street. It took me a little while to find the theatre community here. I was shocked to see how supportive and close-knit this community is. I’ve never seen any place like it. Prior to coming here I toured with the Decatur Park singers for a while. They’re a professional show choir.
Tell us about the rehearsal process for this production.
It’s been an interesting rehearsal process because it’s a large cast and everybody is so important. It’s been a joy discovering everyone throughout the process.
How has it been working with Street Theatre Company?
Street has the best show selection. I think Street’s season is one of the best in Nashville this year. Our musical director, Rollie Mains, is just top notch. Jon Royal is a new director for me, but I knew he was someone I wanted to work with just from the questions he asked during the auditions. So Street Theatre really knows how to find great people and put together great teams.
What challenges have presented themselves during rehearsals?
The size and different experience levels of the cast have made scheduling rehearsals and getting everyone on the same page hard, but every one’s at the top of their games. Watching everyone discover themselves and their roles is so cool.
What’s unique about your role in Hairspray?
I enjoy playing characters that are as far away from me as possible, and Link is cool, he feels cool and gives off that cool vibe. That’s not how I feel everyday. Then he also has some insecurity, trying find some relation between doing the right thing and keeping his career on track. This play has exposed the struggle between success and doing what’s more important in life. I’m very aware of that now.
Every actor has a dream role or three. What’s yours?
There’s a Show called The Last Five Years, a two-person musical, that I really want to do. It tells the story of a relationship from two perspectives, one going backwards and the other forwards. I think the songs are great.
Other articles in this series:
- In the green room at Hairspray with L.T. Kirk
- In the green room at Hairspray with Jon Royal
- In the green room at Hairspray with Jennifer Whitcomb-Oliva
- In the green room at Hairspray with Tonya Pewitt
- In the green room at Hairspray with Daniel Rye
- In the green room at Hairspray with Tamaiya Clayton
- In the green room at Hairspray with Rollie Mains
- In the green room at Hairspray with Cathy Sanborn Street
Hairspray runs March 25-April 16, with performances Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays at 8:00 p.m., and Sundays at 5 p.m. Tickets are $16 and $14. For more information visit the Street Theatre Company website.