My first principal audition was for Richard Rodgers’ Lincoln Center Revival of OKLAHOMA!.  It was for the role of Will Parker and would be at the New York State Theatre.  I was informed that Mr. Rodgers would be there and I should not sing one of his songs because he would get upset if you didn’t sing it correctly

     I thought my chances would be better if I sang a ballad to demonstrate that I was a trained singer as well as being a dancer.  I chose Leonard Bernstein’s Lonely Town from ON THE TOWN.

     I just sang the first line when he shouted from the back of the rehearsal room,  “Stop!  I don’t want to hear you sing that song.  You’re auditioning for a comic character.  Don’t you have a comedy song?”  In shock, I managed to mutter, “No, Sir, I don’t.  But I can sing Kansas City.”  He shouted louder, “Then sing it!  You have to sing it in the show!”  I responded, “Yes, Sir!  I love the song.”  I sang the verse & first chorus.

     When I finished, he again shouted, “Young man, can you dance?”  “Yes, Sir, I can!”, I replied.   “Then, show me!”  Thank God, I had prepared a routine!”

     When I finished, once more he shouted, “Young man, is there anything you can’t do?”  I shouted back, “No, Sir, there isn’t!”  I got the job and I didn’t even have to read the part!!