In the 1940s, when the world was fighting a war, a global group of scientists came together to build the atomic bomb in a government project that used the code name “Manhattan.” In 2014, a global group of artists came together to tell the story of that project and a scientist history forgot in the musical Atomic. Jeremy Kushnier, who plays that scientist Leo Szilard, talked to us about this new show and what we can expect from a show that deals with “a very sensitive subject — and then we put music to it!”
Patty & Emily: Do you know Beth Leavel?
Jeremy Kusnier: Yes!
P&E: Which show do you most want revived?
JK: Oh, unfortunately it’s already being revived and Neil Patrick Harris stole my part.
P&E: Have you ever fallen asleep on stage while pretending to sleep or be dead on stage?
JK: I feel like I must have at some point? I’m sure that I have. I know that I have in rehearsals.
P&E: What’s your favorite Broadway house?
JK: Oh, that’s a tough one. I love the Richard Rodgers because it was the first theatre that I worked in. I love it too because it’s got a really steep rake.
P&E: Do you have a monologue prepared?
JK: Never. Even when I’m asked for it.
P&E: What is the show you’ve seen the most times?
JK: Oh, that’s a good one. I think it probably would have to be Hedwig. I was a real Hed-head back in the day. I saw, like, five different people do it. I just really love the show. I’ve been petitioning these guys for years to do it anywhere. I’d do it in somebody’s garage! I can’t count how many times I went to the Jane Street and saw it.
P&E: Who would you fanboy over?
JK: Now that I’ve met and worked with her, it’s Ms. Sara Gettlefinger. She’s a tremendous talent, she’s absolutely gorgeous, and she’s amazing to work with. I love her.
P&E: On a scale of 1-10, how awful is the Broadway World message board?
JK: On a scale of 1-10? 4,000. I can’t even. I don’t even go; I don’t even dare.
P&E: If you had comps and a time machine, what would you go see?
JK: I would go and see City of Angels. I love that score so much, and that’s another show that I’ve always wanted to do.