words | Brooke Romney
For every little girl who has belted out show tunes to an audience of adoring stuffed animals, starring on Broadway seems like the end to a perfect fairytale. In reality, Kay Trinidad is living that fantastical story, and while parts of it are just as magical as many imagine, being a Broadway star also involves a lot of grit, hustle, and heartache. However, as with most things in life, the intensity of the work makes the rewards so much sweeter...
A day in the life of a Broadway Performer in New York City.
Kay as Tuptin, in The King and I
"The star of this show is Kay Trinidad as Tuptim. Kay has the most glorious vocals that Florida has heard in years. Her love interest JP Moraga as Lun Tha has a difficult role to sing with Trinidad's stunning voice, but because JP Moraga has chiseled stunning good looks the chemistry is magical."
8:00-8:30: Wake up. I eat breakfast and usually take my dogs for a walk before the craziness of the day begins.
8:30-9:30: Exercise. It’s important, in my line of work, to be in great physical shape.
9:30-10:30: Get ready. Having the right look is crucial in the performing arts, so I’ve gotten really good at hair and make-up.
10:30-12:30: Rehearse. I use a rented space in the city to go over lines, choreography, and music for upcoming auditions.
12:30-2:00: Audition. Auditions can be really tough. More often than not you won’t get the part, so you have to have thick skin.
2:00-6:30: Job #2. Most performers have a second job. I was a restaurant server for quite awhile and am now a social media consultant. Since shows can come and go, it’s important to have some form of steady income that can work around your performance and audition schedule.
6:30-7:00: Commute. I feel lucky to only have a 30-minute commute. Living right in the city is incredibly expensive, so commuting is part of a performer’s life.
7:00-7:30: Costumes/hair/make-up. For most shows, I get into my own costumes and do my own hair and make-up. I’ve gotten really fast at being performance ready, so I don’t put in more time than I’m getting paid for.
7:30-8:00: Stretch and warm-up. Many of the parts I play require singing and dancing, so I like to make sure I’m really warm and prepped before the show starts.
8:00: Curtain up! There’s nothing quite as exciting as the start of a great show.
8:00-10:30: Showtime. Watching an entire show come together is exhilarating. I feel so blessed to be able to make a living doing what I love.
10:30-11:30: Dinner. Performers keep very odd hours and we’re always starving after a show, so we love going out to eat to celebrate. I’ve been so lucky to have great chemistry with my castmates; we all feel like family.
11:30: Home. I check in on my dogs and my second job, then wind down after an exhausting day.
12:30: Bedtime. After a full day’s work, I can’t wait to hit the sack, then wake up and do it all over again!
So, you still think you want to be on Broadway? Kay offers her best advice for aspiring actresses:
Study everyone around you in everyday life. The real world is often your best teacher when it comes to playing a part or getting into character.
Train in voice, musical theater, musical instruments, and all aspects of dance including ballet, tap and hip hop
Audition for everything! Experience is your best teacher. Even if you don’t get the part, every audition is incredibly valuable.
Develop persistence, perseverance, and a thick skin. Being internally motivated is a must.
Become a jet-setter. If you want a life onstage, chances are you will have to travel to achieve it. You may earn a role in a traveling cast where you will move from city to city.
Have a support group. In this industry doubt can creep in so easily. You are constantly being judged and compared, so find family members and friends who love you unconditionally and who are willing to stand by your side while you pursue your dreams!
Hanging out with some pretty cool people.
NEW YORK, NY: Meryl Streep, George Clooney and Tom Hanks onstage with SeriousFun campers at the SeriousFun Children's Network 2015 New York Gala: An Evening Of SeriousFun Celebrating the Legacy Of Paul Newman at Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts on March 2, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for SeriousFun Children's Network)