A purr-fect role for this smooth catEntertainment News, Section 4A Monday, January 9th, 2012
Nathan Morgan stars as Old Deuteronomy in the hit musical Cats at the San Diego Civic Theatre Jan. 10 – 15. Born in the small town of Pataskala, Ohio he trod the same road so many kids have on their way to Broadway success, clawing his way into his part by appearing in high school plays, small local shows and regional theater on his way to New York.
San Diego LGBT Weekly: Why do you want to be in showbusiness?
Nathan Morgan: I can’t do anything else! It’s not that I don’t have the brain or a mind for something else; it’s just that I can’t do anything else and be happy. I don’t think you should ever go into the arts for fame or money because inevitably you’ll be let down. You do it because you can’t do anything else. You have to love it.
How did you get into a Broadway show?
I was lucky. I was doing a dinner theater show, and I met some of the kids who had left Cats. They suggested I go in and try out. I went in and sang at the audition for the part of Gus. Three months went by and I didn’t hear a thing. I got a phone call and they said I had to come in and sing for them on their lunch break! They were already into a week of rehearsals for the 2007-2008 production. Two of us were there to sing. Fortunately for me, he cracked on the high note and I didn’t, so I got the part! The day after that I was in rehearsals.
Are you the black sheep of the family?
I think I started out that way. My parents thought I would be poor the rest of my life if I didn’t become a salesman or an electrician. Now my family is intensely proud of me and often come to see me perform in various cities.
Any brothers or sisters?
I have two brothers and one sister. They are not in showbusiness, but we all used to sing together.
Where did you go to college?
I went to Manhattan School of Music in New York. It’s for classical voices. Once, I thought I wanted to be an opera singer until I found out that musical theater is much more fun.
One time I interviewed Betty Buckley, the original singer of “Memories” in Cats. Did you meet her?
A couple of years ago we were in San Francisco and she was there doing her cabaret act. She sent a lovely note to the company wishing us well. It was very sweet of her.
In your bio you said a five o’clock shadow turns you on. What does that mean?
Oh, gosh! That was my way of throwing in some gay things. I’m not attracted to people who look just like me, which is blond and can’t grow a beard. Somebody darker and more grounded is perfect.
Are you openly gay with everybody?
Well, actually, no. My parents love us all very much. Their religious convictions since childhood don’t allow them to accept gay life. It’s not out of anything but love that they are harsh when it comes to the life I live. They don’t understand it. They have not been exposed. They look at it as a personal defeat.
Do you have a significant other?
I do not! Life on the road is lonely. If any of your readers have a five o’clock shadow, have them contact me. We’re all a family in the company.
Well, when you come to San Diego maybe we can find you a little friend. Does it have to be a cat?
No, I’m actually allergic to cats!
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