Meet Broadway’s newest star – Christopher J. Hanke. In his short career, he’s performed in stage productions of “The Full Monty,” “Rent,” “Hair” and “Cry-Baby” and he’s currently co-starring in one of the biggest Broadway hits of 2011, “How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying” at the Al Hirschfeld Theatre. The musical revival features Christopher J. Hanke as the menacing bad guy Bud Frump acting along side Tony Winner John Larroquette and Daniel Radcliffe. He’s won rave reviews for his performance and he is poised to become Broadway’s next superstar. I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to ask the megastar in the making a few questions and as you read on, if you haven’t already fallen in love with Christopher J. Hanke, you will by the end of this article.
According2G: How do you prepare for performing in front of a live audience each night? Do you have any rituals/totems/good luck charms?
Christopher J. Hanke: I arrive at the theater about an hour before the show starts. By rule, we have to be there no later than a half hour, which is 30 minutes before curtain, but the more time in the theater, in my dressing room prior to a show, the more relaxed I am. A pre-show shower to wipe off my day is a must, as is my pre-show meal, eaten in my dressing room. Something smallish and usually healthy. I warm up and steam my voice. Actually not in that order, steam first, then warm up. I don’t have a good luck charm but I do have a planters rock from my one and only waiter job in NYC that sits at my dressing room table. It reminds me that when things get tough at work, I need to remember I could always be waiting tables.
A2G: What’s the first thing you do when you get off stage?
A revival of “How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying” is now showing at the Al Hirschfeld Theatre on Broadway in New York. The classic story follows window cleaner J. Pierpont Finch’s rise through the corporate ranks and as the title suggests, he succeeds in business – without really trying. The musical stars Daniel Radcliffe (of Harry Potter), John Larroquette (who won a Tony for Best Actor in a Musical) and Christopher J. Hanke. The entire cast is fantastic and for the Harry Potter fans, you’ll see an entirely different side to Daniel Radcliffe. I’ve seen all the HP movies as well as Radcliffe’s Broadway debut in “Equus” a few years ago and he’s a very versatile actor. Though he never needs to work another day in his life, if he stays with acting, he’s going to have a great career ahead of him because he is so talented.
After most Broadway shows, you can wait by the stage door and meet the actors you’ve just seen perform. If you are planning on doing this for “How To Succeed…” be warned that the crowds outside waiting to catch a glimpse of Daniel Radcliffe are akin to footage you’ve seen of Beatle-Mania – and I am not even kidding! See how I fared, after the jump.
Do you believe in magic? I do! Actor Daniel Radcliffe is currently starring on Broadway in “How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.” Though he is beyond mobbed when he leaves the theatre each night, Daniel Radcliffe does his very best to accommodate fans who’ve waited for hours (sometimes days) to catch a glimpse of one of the biggest stars in the world. I love the Harry Potter books and movies so much, the other day, I couldn’t help myself and I went to sneak a peak. Seeing Daniel Radcliffe literally engulfed by screaming fans is one of the craziest sights I’ve ever seen, and to those who read this site daily, you know I see a lot of insane stuff!
I think up until this point, meeting Lady Gaga in a sea of fans was one of the nuttiest experiences I’ve had. I can’t really explain it, but there is something so cool about seeing Daniel Radcliffe do his best to talk to fans and sign autographs even though he is utterly mobbed. I’ve had a lot of respect for him already for so many reasons – he’s a great actor (in addition to the Harry Potter franchise, he’s amazing on Broadway in “Equus” and now “How To Succeed In Business…”), he’s accomplished so many great things before age 21 and last but not least – he is Harry Potter (for crying out loud!)
I was able to pull off a very difficult task of getting a photo with Daniel Radcliffe and I am very grateful for this experience which I’ll never forget. To those people from around the world that stood with me through a freak New York summer rainstorm (that lasted for well over an hour), I know July 26, 2011 is a day they’ll not be forgetting any time soon either. Thanks again Daniel. I have so much respect for you for keeping your cool in these situations and for being VERY cool. All I can say is that meeting you is truly magical.
Partial view of the crowd outside "How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying" on July 17, 2011
After seeing the final installment of the Harry Potter franchise on its record breaking worldwide box office weekend, I decided there was only one way to conclude my Harry Potter experience – by meeting the man himself. Daniel Radcliffe is currently starring in “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying” on Broadway in New York. I decided to check out the stage door action after the musical let out and it was a scene like I’ve rarely seen. Thousands of people lined the streets for a glimpse of the star and I was part of the madness. The photo above is just one side of the stage door exit and in addition to that crowd, there was one (where I was) on the opposite side and twice as many people waited across the street. The security was very organized and they continually asked the crowd politely to cooperate by not pushing and shoving (which would crush us in the front). I was impressed by that as well as I’ve seen many situations in my life where the security guards decide to show everyone who is boss and are rude to fans. Everyone cooperated, by the way. Daniel Radcliffe is no doubt having one of the craziest and most historic weekends of his life as the final installment of the biggest franchise in cinema history is not only released thus closing a major chapter of his life, but it broke so many box office records that may never be broken again. Radcliffe ends this part of his life on the highest note possible.
As I’ve been around thousands of celebrities from all walks of life (and I’ve written about many of these encounters extensively on this site), you never know how the star in question will be, especially in a situation as nutty as this one. I’ve definitely seen good and bad situations and I predicted that from the interviews I’ve seen Radcliffe in, he’d be nice. Find out what happened after the jump.
I actually saw this flier pinned up to a trash can, which in and of itself is amazing. I was able to get a photo without getting my hands dirty!
And please note, if you like what you read below, this performance will be happening on July 15, 2011 so follow the links and get your tickets while you can!
After a quick spin on the Google machine, I found out the following info which I’ve borrowed from the UCB Theatre’s official website:
The Kirk Cameron Repertory Players Present: A HARRY POTTER MUSICAL!
Because who said God-fearing Christians couldn’t enjoy Harry Potter too? No one!
Inspired by Kirk Cameron, Hollywood star and hardcore Evangelical Christian, The Kirk Cameron Repertory Players have played to sold out crowds at community theaters, Growing Pains fan conventions, and creation museums all over America.
(The audience is encouraged to bring Harry Potter books and Leonardo DiCaprio DVDs to the show. There will be a book and DVD burning during the performance.)
Book and Lyrics by Achilles Stamatelaky
Music by Ari Scott
Directed by Ryan Karels