By Matthew Blank
24 Jul 2012
Beach's Broadway credits include Les Misérables, La Cage aux Folles (Tony nomination), Beauty and the Beast (Tony nomination), Doonesbury, The Moony Shapiro Songbook, Annie, Something's Afoot and 1776.
He created the role of Roger de Bris in the Broadway production of The Producers, winning a Tony Award and playing the part in the film adaptation of the musical.
He has appeared on screen in "Murder She Wrote," "Cheers," "Saved by the Bell," "The John Larroquette Show," "Will & Grace" and "Queer as Folk."
|Full given name:||My full birth name is Gary Lee Beach and seeing it in print I can easily see why I dropped the "Lee" decades ago.|
|Where you were born/where you were raised:||I was born in Alexandria, VA, midway through the last century.|
|Zodiac Sign:||I'm a career Libra.|
|First Broadway show you ever saw:||
The first Broadway show I ever saw was the tour of The Music Man at the National Theater in Washington, D.C. |
Thank you, Meredith Willson, wherever you're marching. Life-altering. The first show I ever saw actually on Broadway was a revival of Annie Get Your Gun starring Ethel Merman. God! I sound 110.
|Did you have any particular mentors or inspirations when first starting out?||A great inspiration for me when I was young was Alfred Drake. Original star of practically every musical of his time. The consummate singing actor.|
|If you could go back in time and catch any Broadway show, what would it be?||Any Ziegfeld Follies... W.C. Fields, Fanny Brice. Some of the greats.|
|Current or recent show you recommended to friends:||The show I tell everyone to see is The Book of Mormon. A must-see. The funniest musical since The Producers. Come on, you knew I was going to say that.|
|Some favorite modern musicals:||Les Miserables... can't wait for the movie!|
|Some favorite classic musicals:||Some of the older shows (the classics, as we call them) are so well crafted they're practically perfect. I recently played Vandergelder in three separate productions of Hello, Dolly! and, as a friend of mine says about the show, "the damn thing just works." And it does.|
|The one performance – attended - that you will never forget:||My most exciting night I ever spent in the theatre? Easy. A one-night-only benefit concert honoring the Museum of the City of New York starring Mary Martin and Ethel Merman. These two stars standing on a Broadway stage belting out every hit they ever had. A priceless memory.|
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