Entertainment » Theatre

Constantine Maroulis On Playing Che in 'Evita': 'I Am a Theater Geek!'

by Steve Duffy
EDGE Media Network Contributor
Wednesday Oct 4, 2017

Constantine Maroulis first came to prominence as the beloved rock n' roll underdog on "American Idol." He then secured his place in pop culture as a Broadway superstar, best known for his Tony-nominated role in "Rock Of Ages."

Now, for his third act, he begins an invigorating and promising new era with a bevvy of intriguing projects, including putting the finishing touches on his most assured and swaggering solo music to date. Boston area theatergoers have the opportunity to see Maroulis in one of the musical theater's showiest roles, that of Che Guevera in the Andrew Lloyd Webber/Tim Rice musical "Evita" at the North Shore Music Theatre, September 26 to October 8.

EDGE spoke to Maroulis about the role and the musical.

EDGE: Have you seen 'Evita' before?

Constantine Maroulis: Oh yes! I saw it when Ricky Martin was playing the role of Che Guevara and loved the story since then.

EDGE: What was it about this role of Che Guevara that you liked?

Constantine Maroulis: He is such a significant historical figure. There were so many facets about him as a person. He wanted to be a doctor, a world traveler, and a crusader, to name a few. There are just so many stories about the man he was that stand out: everything from his iconic beret to his street art. He will also be remembered most for his complicated friendship with Castro. I can't thank my dear friend, Nick Kenkel (the production's director/choreographer), enough for asking me to be a part of this show. The opportunity to work with him and perform in such a great Andrew Lloyd Webber piece is truly amazing.

EDGE: How are you similar to your character Che?

Constantine Maroulis: I think part of what has been my brand on Broadway is portraying the likable and loveable characters. Che is a little different for me, but I would still like to bring some of my coolness and strength to his character.

EDGE: Did you see yourself morphing into a musical stage performer?

Constantine Maroulis: I received my B.F.A. in Music Theater from Boston Conservatory. I have always had a love of theatre. Boston is like my second home. In short, yes, this is what I thought I would be doing. I was touring in 'Rent' playing Roger when I was told I would not be coming back. Just about the same time, American Idol presented itself and I went after it like I would have gone after any job. I knew and they knew that I never was going to be a pop star, so I'm proud to say I am a theatre geek!

EDGE: Obviously, the music comes easy for you. How do you handle the choreographic demands?

Constantine Maroulis: Nothing is easy! There is so much work involved. With 'Evita,' there is a very short rehearsal schedule, so I have to work hard and learn fast. Once I find who my character is and what he wants, everything falls in place. Dance and movement are not my specialty, but I never let it hold me back. The next couple of weeks are going to be nuts, but I'm very excited to be part of this production.

EDGE: You recently released a new single, 'All About You.' What is the song about?

Constantine Maroulis: I am very excited about the new song. It has been doing well. I co-wrote it with Sam Hollander (he also wrote 'Handclap.') In brainstorming for this song, we both spoke kindly of our love for New England. When I moved to Boston, It was the first time I was away from home and I fell in love with a southern belle. 'All About You' is an earnest power ballad about not being able to move on.

EDGE: What have you learned as an actor? Has it helped you perform better when performing?

Constantine Maroulis: It is about the connection to the lyric. Great singers are great storytellers: Sinatra, Sam Cooke, and Billie Holiday. As an actor or a musician, it is about connecting to the audience. I am always in the scene or song. Trying to create a story in that song that the listener will love. For me, I have become a better actor because of the music and vice versa.

EDGE: What are your thoughts on the revival of 'American Idol?'

Constantine Maroulis: Awesome! Going into it, I knew I was not a big rock star or a pop star, because Broadway is my game. It was, and still is, an incredible part of my life. The show brought families back together and was a big part of TV history. What I love about this revival is that it will be focusing more on the candidates and their stories.

EDGE: What advice would you give to the new 'American Idol' performers?

Constantine Maroulis: Dream big! This is your small window of opportunity, so make the most of it. When it comes to song choice, find a song that is rare and a musical gem. Make it your own. Make sure your song is not predictable. While at the auditions, be good to everyone. And remember, kick ass!

EDGE: What else are you working on?

Constantine Maroulis: I'm doing my very first crowdfunding record. The first three songs have already been released. The balance of the album is still being written. I also have a couple of acting opportunities that I'm shifting through along with a potential new Broadway show as actor and producer in the works.

For more information about Constantine, visit visit his website. To purchase tickets to see him perform in "Evita "at the North Shore Music Theatre visit visit the North Shore Music Theatre website.


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