The lyric "I know
where I've been!" has never rang more true than with Shannon Durig. After over 1,000 performances as Broadway's favorite big-girl Tracy
Turnblad, Shannon will take her final Hairspray bow on Sunday, April 13, 2008.
Shannon first stepped
on-stage at the Neil Simon Theatre in August 2003 as an understudy, but soon
found herself shaking-it with the nicest kids in town eight times a week! Amidst
teasing-up her towering hair and busting-down TV segregation, Shannon
has fostered a loving family among her cast and fans.
BroadwayWorld had the wonderful opportunity to chat
with Shannon Durig during her farewell week.
This lucky leading lady shares the absolute joys and unforgettable
relationships this incredible role has privileged her
Eugene Lovendusky: With over 1,000 performances, "wow" seems an understatement
How does it feel?
Shannon Durig: It
feels amazing. I've always dreamed to be on Broadway; but to do 1,000 shows I
feel is a dream come true beyond whatever I could have hoped and wished.
Eugene: Is there a special way you're going
Shannon: We had our big celebration for the
1,000th show last month. Of course, we'll have a party with friends, eat, drink
and be merry. Really, I want to celebrate this great cast. It's bitter-sweet.
These are people I've known for four-and-a-half years
I've grown-up with them.
I've seen them more than my own family. It's like I'm graduating from Patterson Park High School!
Eugene: Let's rewind time back to 2003 when
you made your Broadway debut as an understudy
Shannon: When I first went on, it was an
out-of-body experience. It was so scary and also so fun at the same time. I was
nervous to do it again but knew I had to get back on the horse. These people
trust you a lot to carry this show. I
remember being in awe. And now, for doing it so long it's become a part of
me. I have a blast every single night. I'm actually getting to play with my
best friends on-stage in front of thousands of people.
Eugene: You really have been the heart of
this show for so long. At the same time, Hairspray
has had a revolving door of some great talent. For example, as Link Larkin,
you've romanced with Matthew Morrison, Richard H. Blake, Andrew Rannells,
Ashley Parker Angel. Who's the best
Shannon: [laughs] They all are! They're all my
favorites in their own special way because they're all different
all hot! [laughs] I love all my Links.