Wednesday, June 1, 2011

From Marius to Miss Saigon, a Broadway Star Makes His Walnut Debut!

The Walnut Street Theater June 2011 Newsletter features Eric:

"When you have a man like Eric Kunze playing Chris in MISS SAIGON, it's easy to understand how Kim can carry a torch for him after so many years. There's no denying that he's a handsome fella, but furthermore, he's an enormously talented performer with the kind of leading-man good looks you'd expect for the role. And boy, does he deliver the goods! Originally from San Diego (which he still calls home today), his first theatrical performance was at the age of 17 in a production of Tom Sawyer at the Moonlight Ampitheater. He spent many summers on that stage growing as a young performer before going to college after high school. "I love coming home to family, friends, weather and ocean air that San Diego provides" gushed Eric.

In the last quarter of his college year, he was in New York City on an internship studying theatre, and auditioned for Les Miserables, landing the role of Marius. It was time for Eric to make his Broadway debut in the world's most popular musical. Who could ask for anything more? There was no where to go but up from that point on. "About nine months later," Eric explained "I was moved into the role of Chris in MISS SAIGON, also performing in the First National Company (where I met and worked with Melinda Chua and Phillip Michael Baskerville from our current production) as well as the Broadway company."

Working with the big stars and big lights on Broadway could make an actor jaded, but not so in the case of Eric. He couldn't be more thrilled to be here in Philadelphia at America's oldest theatre reprising his MISS SAIGON role. "This production at The Walnut is by far one of the most passionate, well sung, and beautifully directed productions I have ever been a part of - thanks to Bruce Lumpkin. This story and music that Philly audiences are experiencing is absolutely TOP NOTCH and I am fortunate to be part of something that affects hundreds of people every night." As for what part of the show is his favorite, all he can say is "it is difficult to point out a particular moment that is my favorite, but I suppose every time I get to sing into my co-star's eyes, that is a pretty special moment to me." And when you hear Eric singing such anthems as "Why, God, Why," it will be a special moment for you too. We can't wait to see what's next for him after his Walnut debut in MISS SAIGON!"

Also from their newsletter:


Such an amazing production! I am honored to have seen it! And the cast was out of this world! - David McCloughan Jr.

Rarely am I as blown away as I was by Miss Saigon. Thank you for a fabulous night of theatre. - Debbie Bradin Silverstone

The show was emotional it had me crying! I loved it! - Cathie Polchenko Josaphouitch

100% standing O from the top of the balcony down to the front row. There was so much passion, energy and talent onstage! Amazing show - do not miss it! - Margaret Stava Wunschl

These are quotes from actual audience members who have experienced the sensation at the Walnut Street Theatre that is MISS SAIGON! The standing ovations keep on coming. The applause is louder than the helicopter. The critics agree that MISS SAIGON is really going to heat up Philadelphia this summer. MISS SAIGON is a blockbuster that audiences can't stop raving about. With Bruce Lumpkin's brilliantly nuanced direction, Michelle Gaudette's heart-stopping choreography and the star-making performances of Melinda Chua and Eric Kunze, MISS SAIGON is a masterpiece that will dazzle your senses.

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