Five Questions With… Jared Bradshaw

As a swing Jared Bradshaw has covered 9 of the 11 male roles or “tracks” in the First National Tour and Chicago companies of JERSEY BOYS. Now, Jared has brought his talent to New York as the newest swing member of the Broadway cast.

You recently joined the Broadway company of JERSEY BOYS as a swing. You’ve also been part of the First National Tour and Chicago companies. How would you compare life on tour with joining the Broadway cast?

Well, it’s amazing…I’ve been in three companies of this show, and it’s amazing the talent that JERSEY BOYS finds. You really see a stellar Jersey Boys whether it’s in Appleton or on Broadway. I’m married, so tour was difficult for me with my wife in a show here. We made the most of it travelling back and forth…but I think I had my share of hotels and room service last year. But, it is an amazing way to see the country, and the tour is a great “family”. Here in New York…there’s nothing like walking to the August Wilson theatre 10 minutes before half hour. priceless. you won’t hear me complaining!

Every performer has that moment when it just “clicks” and they know that performing is what they want to do for a career. What was your moment?

I remember doing shows in community theatre and high school and college with many talented folks growing up. I think when I was cast with 4 shows on Disney Cruise Line right out of college…that first day of rehearsal…everyone blew me away with their talent and effort. I knew then…I wanted to be in that room…where I had to step up my game to get to the level of everyone else. That’s inspiring and continues today in New York.

What is a typical day/show in the life of a swing?

Well, as an actor…I usually go to bed at 1:30 or 2 am. sleep til 10. check my phone. I have been on the last 3 shows, this week. today we have cast notes with the director at noon (fairly rare) and i have a dance rehearsal to learn the final track I haven’t covered besides Frankie. That will take me to 5pm. dinner, and I’ll probably find out then if i’m on in the show again tonight. it’s a crazy job covering 7 roles…but if you get at least an hour’s notice…there’s nothing to sweat over (too much).

What is your dream role? If you could cast yourself in any role in any current or previously running show.

I always tell my wife for my 40th Birthday (still YEARS away…hahah) I want her to hire an orchestra and cast all my friends in SWEENEY TODD, so we can just sing through the score. That’s my dream role. Drama, comedy, opera, musical theatre and a great story. Oh, and Sondheim, my favorite. I’d also love to play Willy Wonka in the musical version. I hear the “hairspray/smash” team is working on it. I doubt they’ll use me, though. hahah ! I’d go with Norbert.

Everyone loves JERSEY BOYS. I know several people who don’t like theatre, but can’t stop talking about JERSEY BOYS. What do you think it is that makes this show appeal to so many?

I think most all of us “grew up” with this music, whether you’re 30 or 70. It’s a great underdog story, and it’s not typical musical theatre. It’s a rock concert, with a fascinating ” behind the music” history lesson, that isn’t well known. It’s a great “book”, the way it was all strung together. It’s a shame Broadway didn’t figure this out with the Beatles and the Beach Boys. The thing that makes this show work is that there aren’t characters named DAWN and SHERRY. that would be false…ruin it. It’s truth. This all really happened to the group. That’s the secret. And the music is awesome.

A big thanks to Jared for taking the time to chat. Be sure to check out JERSEY BOYS at the August Wilson Theatre in New York. For more info on Jared make sure you check out jaredbradshaw.com

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