Theatre, Musical Theatre, Jerry Herman, Revue, Vocal Production
Jerry Herman is celebrated for his ability to showcase strong leading female roles in his canon of work that spans some fifty years. In writing such strong female characters, he must produce strong male counterparts to these women who can communicate on their level and not become overpowered by the women's presence. I was cast in the musical revue, It's Today: An Evening of Jerry Herman, conceived, directed, and choreographed by Earl D. Weaver. My portion of the revue explored Herman's leading male roles of Cornelius from Hello, Dolly!; Mack from Mack and Mabel; Colonel Tadeusz Boleslav Stjerbinsky from The Grand Tour; and Albin from La Cage aux Folles, My analysis of these specific leading male roles uncovers how their relationships with their leading ladies defines their character in each of the musicals for which they were written. It also helped me define multiple characters in the course of a revue with no plot or storyline. Though all these male characters provided me with challenges, my greatest task was defining Albin in La Cage aux Folles. He provides a unique perspective in that he exemplifies a combination of both male/female characteristics. He is a man who regularly portrays a woman onstage in a drag club as well as assuming a female role in a homosexual relationship. He serves as the 'leading lady' for La Cage aux Folles though his character is considered a 'leading man' role. He is the consummate representation of all Jerry Herman leading roles, and embodies many of the themes Herman utilizes in all his work.
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Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.)
College of Arts and Humanities
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Mansell, John, "Jerry Herman's Leading Ladies" (2010). Electronic Theses and Dissertations, 2004-2019. 4215.