Indiana Daily Student

‘Jersey Boys’ debuting at IU Auditorium

Jersey Boys

Nicholas Dromard, Keith Hines, Hayden Milanes and Drew Seeley
Jersey Boys Nicholas Dromard, Keith Hines, Hayden Milanes and Drew Seeley

Actor Drew Seeley was hesitant to accept the part of Bob Gaudio in the touring production of “Jersey Boys” because of the nine-month commitment.

Accustomed to movies that usually shoot for two to four months, Seeley knew accepting the part would mean being away from his wife, Amy, after getting married a year and a half ago.

“I was really excited, but I also wondered if it was the best move,” Seeley said. “I’m so glad that I decided to do this because Amy’s been able to come out and visit me on the road quite a bit. We’re in a new city every week, so I’m getting to see the country and it’s an absolute blast.”

At 8 p.m. Tuesday, Seeley will perform alongside fellow cast members in the Broadway Tour “Jersey Boys” for the first time at IU ?Auditorium.

“We have worked hard over the past several years to bring Jersey Boys to IU Auditorium for its debut, and we were thrilled when it made its way into our 2014-2015 season,” Maria K. Talbert, associate director of IU Auditorium, said in an email. “This is the first time in several years that we have presented an event of such acclaim that it was able to run for an entire week’s worth of ?performances.”

“Jersey Boys” is a documentary-style musical that follows the journey of four men who come together to form the 1960s rock ‘n’ roll group, the Four Seasons.

Seeley’s character, Bob Gaudio, is the last of the four to join the group and writes their hit songs, including “Sherry,” “Big Girls Don’t Cry” and “Walk Like a Man.”

“It’s a fun role to play because I’m a songwriter in real life,” Seeley said. “I’ve been doing that since I was a kid.”

Seeley said touring across the country is much different than being in movies.

“It’s a cooler opportunity to build real friendships and family on the road,” Seeley said. “I know that I’m going to keep in touch with these guys most of my life I’m sure afterwards, whereas film and TV it’s very quick in and out.”

Seeley also said performing the same show live gives him a different kind of thrill.

“TV is maybe more spontaneous because you haven’t practiced it a million times, but part of the fun of it in theater is finding something new every night on stage with material you’ve done so many times,” ?Seeley said.

Seeley moved to Los Angeles to pursue his acting career. He offered advice to aspiring musical theater majors, saying they should move to New York or Los Angeles in order to start their careers.

“Just being there is probably the biggest thing, and then not getting discouraged if it doesn’t happen right away and having the persistence to stay out there until you get your break,” Seeley said. “Inevitably it will happen. It’s just a matter of if you have the patience to wait for it to happen.”

Talbert said this show will bring out the fun side in its audience during each of the performances.

“It definitely won’t be a still and quiet night in the theater,” Talbert said. “The music is so beloved, and it is sure to elicit patrons to move and dance in their seats.”

In addition to the high energy throughout the show, Seeley said this is not a typical 1950s musical.

“It’s the kind of show that wives can drag their husbands to or girls drag their boyfriends to and guys will like it as well,” Seeley said. “It’s like an episode of ‘The Sopranos’ with music because you’ve got to deal with gang issues, broken marriages, gambling debt and some coarse language in the show.”

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