While I’m a pretty good actor, and my singing voice has been described by my Uber passengers as “Not bad, but could you quiet down? I have a headache,” the big problem is that I dance about as well as a Border Collie that needs to take a dump. I figured that gymnastics would be a good backdoor to use to my advantage. The Newsies cast has a couple of designated backflippers during some of the more motion-intensive numbers. I reasoned that I could fake the dancing better than the Derek Houghs I’d be competing against could fake the part where you have to jump upside-down and not land on your face.
To have any kind of edge, I was going to need to learn some tumbling. As it turned out, it was surprisingly difficult to find a gymnastics facility that would accept a 22-year-old male who can still fit into youth-size shirts. I walked into three separate gyms, told the receptionist that I’d like to register for gymnastics classes, and every single one asked me the same question: “How old is your daughter?” Considering how my love life is going, my daughter is about negative 12, so this was admittedly a little disheartening.
But I finally found a gym that worked with me, and I was right! The gymnastics part was a lot easier than I would’ve expected. I was going to nail this audition. This is me attempting a backflip for the first time.