Nate Parker is preparing to play the part of Jesus in DOMA Theatre Companies, JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR, opening this February. We had a great phone conversation which led into chatting for over a half an hour about shows.
The Playbill Collector (TPC): How did you get your start in theater?
Nate Parker (NP): I was kind of a late bloomer. When I was in high school, I moved around to three different high schools. A friend told me to do theater. It was tough because I was shy, but my teacher focused on improv. That background not only gave me confidence on stage and in the classroom, but when I moved it helped me deal with the struggles of a school change mid year. College was when I started my love affair with musical theater. My goal was to become a triple threat, but in spite of two left feet I’m happy with how far I’ve come.
TPC: After college what did you do?
NP: Eventually I bit the bullet and moved to New York. It worked out because I worked there for 6.5 years. I did tours and shows. In 2007-2008 I was in the Farewell Tour of JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR with Ted Neeley and played Peter and the Jesus understudy.
TPC: What made you leave NYC?
NP: I moved to Los Angeles to get away from performing and be closer to family. However, I still had the “performer’s” itch and was looking to fill the void.
NP: My voice is more geared to pop-rock and I like the modern music. I’ll never forget the first time a friend in college played the soundtrack for me. It’s a story everybody knows and was controversial when it first came out. The music is amazing, the story is amazing and I’ve worked hard to be able to sing it and act it.
TPC: What are your favorite moments of the show?
NP: Right before Pilate has to make the order of having Jesus crucified; it’s Pilate’s last appeal to him. Jesus has already decided he has to die and Pilate is trying to help him get out of it. Also, in the Last Supper where Judas and Jesus are fighting for the last time is another key moment. Judas has already realized what he has to do. He could say he’s sorry but he’s past that point.
TPC: What’s the venue like?
NP: It’s a 99 seat house with a full stage. We have a live band, wireless mic’s, rock show lights, and a killer set.
TPC: What are some shows you’d love to be in and/or parts you’d like to play?
NP: I always wanted to do TOMMY. People rarely do AIDA but I’d love to do that. If I got to play Chris in MISS SAIGON that would be fantastic. ROCK OF AGES would be another show I’d love to perform in. I saw it four times Off-Broadway at New World Stages!
TPC: Aside from acting, you have a 9 to 5 job. What do you do?
NP: Accounting at Nickelodeon.
TPC: Is there anything else you want people to know?
NP: Many people ask if kids should be brought, it is probably not appropriate unless you want the religious aspect of it available to your children. We are selling fast so please get your tickets! Opening is sold out and many others are selling fast.
For more information on the show check out: http://www.domatheatre.