Monday, April 21, 2008

Ashley Spencer is "all that" on Broadway

Ashley Spencer is just so good. She really is. I'm not a theater critic by any means, but seeing her performance as "Amber Von Tussen" in Hairspray on Broadway a few weeks ago drove home to me that the Stark County woman has it all.

Ashley caught all of our eyes last year when she was runner-up on NBC's "Grease: You're the One That I Want." She didn't land the role of "Sandy" at Ridel High, but she's doing great in 1952 Baltimore singing and dancing her heart out. I had my handy-cam with me and got some video of Ashley signing autographs after the show. I'm posting the raw video so you can see how nice she is interacting with the audience.
video


After she finished with the autographs, I got to talk to Ashley for a few minutes on the side. She said she's having a great time on Broadway and hopes to stop back home to Stark County in a month or so. She promised me an interview next time she's in town, so hopefully we'll be able to talk with her then.

What's stands out to me is that Ashley is so nice and pleasant in person, yet plays such a selfish vixen on the stage. "Amber" is out to hog the spotlight and the hunk .. but loses both to a spunky-and-chunky "Tracy Turnblad." Ashley's voice is so strong and her diction is so good that even from the upper balcony, it was easy to understand her lines. Several times I noticed sweat pouring down her cheeks from dance numbers that are phenominal workouts all by themselves.

By the way, the Broadway edition of Hairspray includes George Wendt -- yes that GW of "Cheers" fame -- playing Tracy's mother "Edna." John Travolta played the part in the movie version of Hairspray, but Wendt is fabulous on the stage. I still think Ashley is a dead ringer for a young Meg Ryan, so maybe she'll be on the big and small screens too someday.

Her bio page talks a lot more about what Ashley's been doing in NYC, but if you get to the Big Apple, make time for Hairspray. Nothing like seeing a local gal doing well.

1 comment:

Susiemom01 said...

Eric

So glad you got to see the show. Ashley is a dear friend, and it is hard to believe when you see her on that New York stage, that she was just here in Canton doing local theatre a couple of years ago. She is definitely going to be a BIG STAR! Thanks for your kind words! Everyone should go to New York to see the show! It is wonderful!