Video by Alessandra Hickson & Barbara Duarte
Krysta Rodriguez may have nabbed the role of a lifetime as the leading lady in musical “First Date,” but the star says the show’s themes of love and dating mimic many aspects of real-life romance, making it a one-of-a-kind show on Broadway right now.
“She’s a self-proclaimed serial dater – she’s gone on a lot of dates and thinks she knows what every type of guy is. She’s not very open to the experience,” Rodriguez says of her character Casey, a New Yorker who reluctantly goes on a first date. “I think a lot of people feel that way,” continues Rodriguez, who describes herself as “more open,” even as she admits “it’s going to take a lot to impress me.”
Rodriguez may still be on her own real-life search for love but she is a polished singer, actress and dancer whose long list of credits belies her 29 years. The Orange County, California native originated the role of Wednesday Addams in the 2009 musical “The Addams Family,” performed in Broadway’s “In the Heights” and played a stint on televisions “Smash” – all projects which have prepared the 29-year-old for her first major leading role to date.
“I have been preparing my whole life to be an actress in order to step up when it was my time,” says Rodriguez of her role on “First Date” opposite actor Zachary Levi. “Once I realized that this was something I could do, my life changed. Everything became about that goal. When the possibility and the yearning come together and you’ve found what you want to do – well, that’s what people look for their entire lives.”
Watch to see Rodriguez – who is of mixed Spanish-European descent – chat about her experience being one of the few Latino actors on Broadway and check out a behind-the-scenes look at both her dressing room and “First Date” stage.