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Q&A: Beetlejuice Star Adam Dannheisser’s First Survival Job Was Better Than Yours



It’s January – that time of year when we vow to stop drinking, start exercising, and try things we haven’t tried before. In honor of new beginnings, we sat down with Beetlejuice star Adam Dannheisser to hear about some of his most significant “firsts.” To find out why his first survival job was better than yours, read on:

Broadway Spin: What was the first show you were ever in?

Adam Dannheisser: When I was five years old I was given the (made up) role of the Bagel Man in a camp production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolored Dreamcoat.

BS: How did it go?

AD: I got my line out with force and gusto. “Bagels! Bagels! Hot, delicious bagels!”  I was hooked for life.  On theater and bagels.

BS: What was your first Broadway role?

AD: Boatswain in The Tempest starring Patrick Stewart.

BS: What was the most surprising thing about being on Broadway for the first time?

AD: The rush of excitement on opening night. The achievement of a life-long goal. Biggest lesson I learned for next time: Do everything like Sir Patrick Stewart is watching you.

BS: What was your first survival job?

AD: I was a bartender at Arriba! Arriba! Midtown while working my way through grad school at NYU.  And I had no idea how to bartend. I had this job for one year.

BS: Why did you leave?

AD: I left this job when I took out a huge student loan so that I could focus on my acting training exclusively.  But I can make a mean margarita to this day.

BS: What was your first paid acting job?

AD: I played Huck Finn in a production of Big River at Petrucci’s Dinner Theater in Laurel, Maryland.  I think I made 24 bucks a show. Plus tips.

BS: Tell us about your first on-stage kiss.

AD: I was in a high school production of Brigadoon playing opposite my girlfriend, Kristin. This kiss went very well. Very natural. Maybe too natural 🙂

BS: And, finally, your first Broadway crush? (Sorry, Kristin!)

AD: I did a production of Twelfth Night at Lincoln Center. Had a huge crush on Helen Hunt.

BS: Did she know?

AD: She thought I was a nice boy.

Catch Adam in Beetlejuice before its final performance at the Winter Garden Theatre on June 6. Beetlejuice (and every other show on Broadway) is in play at Broadway Roulette!