Perry Ryan Theater Co. hosts ‘Christine,’ Eryn LeCroy, in concert

<br>Perry Ryan Theater Co. hosts ‘Christine,’ Eryn LeCroy, in concert

“Who says you have to hop on a plane to experience Broadway quality theater?”

That’s the premise of the Perry Ryan Theater Co., founded last year in Bentonville by Kayla Grizzard, who performed professionally at the Tony Award winning Dallas Theater Center in Dallas before moving to Northwest Arkansas.

In the company’s second show, set for Feb. 17-18 at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, PRTC welcomes Eryn LeCroy, who made her Broadway debut in 2018 in the iconic role of Christine Daae in “The Phantom of the Opera.” LeCroy will perform alongside Dan Micciche, music director and conductor of “Wicked” on Broadway, and other local Perry Ryan Theater performers. Selections for the evening will include music from “Phantom of the Opera,” “Carousel,” “My Fair Lady” and more.

LeCroy, who is originally from Texas, most recently portrayed Martha Jefferson and Dr. Lyman Hall in the Broadway revival of “1776.” She answered these questions for What’s Up!

Q. How long and how difficult/magical was the journey from regional theater and off-Broadway to “Phantom”?

A. I moved to New York in 2015 and made my Broadway debut in “The Phantom of the Opera” in 2018. Everyone’s story and timeline will look different with their personal journeys in this particular career. I’m very grateful for all of my theater experiences that came before “Phantom” as well as all that have come and will continue to come after “Phantom.” I see these as opportunities to be sharpened and grow. Of course there have been challenges and bumps in the road along the way, but the magic lies in the growth and the beautiful relationships and connections that have been built through each show and contract.

Q. Can you talk a little bit about the process of auditioning for “Phantom,” being cast and your reaction to that and being directed by Hal Prince?

A. I auditioned for Christine in “The Phantom of the Opera” over a period of three years. I went in multiple times for various members of the creative team from the casting director to the music supervisor to the production supervisor to the dance supervisor. My final callback was on the stage of the Majestic Theater for Hal Prince. After he gave me a “thumb’s up,” they sent my tapes to Andrew Lloyd Webber and Cameron Mackintosh in London, who gave the final approval for casting. I was the last Christine Hal cast before he passed away the following year. When my agents surprised me and told me I would be making my Broadway debut as Christine, I experienced every possible emotion within 30 seconds. I was absolutely overcome with excitement and joy to join this dream show in a role that had been a dream of mine since I saw it in the West End when I was 14 years old. Ben Crawford, who is still the current Phantom on Broadway, was my Phantom when I joined the company. It was and will always truly be an honor to be part of this show’s legacy.

Q. You’ve played some wonderful roles, including Eliza in “My Fair Lady,” Fiona in “Brigadoon” and Cinderella in “Into the Woods.” Is Christine your favorite role? Or not?

A. It’s a close tie between Eliza and Christine. Both characters are vastly different, but they both have such beautiful character arcs. My favorite musical of all time, however, is Sondheim’s “Sweeney Todd.” I’ve had the opportunity to be part of that show three different times now in my career.

Q. How did your performance in Northwest Arkansas come about?

A. Scott Jones, the artistic director of Perry Ryan Theater Company, and I went to undergrad together at Oklahoma City University, and he has been one of my dearest friends for many years. Scott, along with Kayla Grizzard, PRTC’S CEO and also a friend of mine from her time in New York, invited me to join them and collaborate with them on this performance. It is a joy and honor for me to do this with my friends as they pursue this dream…

Q. What are the wonderful aspects of this kind of performance for you and for the audience?

A. I love this kind of performance because while we will be performing in such a gorgeous venue at Crystal Bridges, the show will also have an intimate feeling of sharing music and stories with old friends and new.


‘From B’way With Love’

WHEN — 7:30 p.m. Feb. 17-18

WHERE — Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville

COST — $75


Categories: Theater