“Oh, what a night” indeed! The energy in the theater for North Shore Music Theatre’s production of Jersey Boys was unlike anything I have experienced before.
NSMT’s production of Jersey Boys was a show for the ages. From personally seeing the show’s first preview to their closing performance, I can confirm that this show never gets old. From the music, to the laugh-out-loud script, to the sleek set design, this show does not disappoint. (As attested by the plethora of mothers who couldn’t help but dance in their seats to “Sherry” and “Walk Like A Man”!) After seeing the production at New World Stages last year, I was ecstatic when North Shore announced this show as part of it’s 2019 summer season. The cast as a whole were stand-outs but shoutouts need to be given to the actors who portrayed the infamous Four Seasons with Andrés Acosta as Tommy DeVito, Luke Hamilton as Bob Gaudio, Jonathan Mousset Alonso as Frankie Valli, and Alex Puette as Nick Massi. Additionally, some favorite performances of mine were Alaina Mills as Mary Delgado and Josh Greenblatt as Joey. This production even had a Jersey Boys Broadway and Touring Veteran, Barry Anderson, as Bob Crewe — having played the role for 6 years in both companies.
A major highlight of the closing performance was the standing ovation the crowd gave Jonathan Mousset Alonso for “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You” — a crowd favorite and personal favorite of mine. Aside from just the closing performance, a major highlight from all performances I saw (3 in total) was that the energy remained consistent throughout. The audience was cheering, laughing, and weeping together through the highs and lows of the show. That, in my opinion, is what stamps the seal of a show that will remain timeless. The energy in the theater every night is something that is infectious.
Recently, I talked with Michael Galvin, the high school Production Intern for Jersey Boys at NSMT, about his experiences working on this show. When talking to him about what his first day was like, he said, “My first day interning at NSMT feels like a whirlwind. I was very nervous about coming into the rehearsal process of Jersey Boys because I didn’t know how I was going to be treated. Honestly, I was expecting no one to take note of a 17 year old observing the rehearsal process but, I was so wrong.” Galvin notes that the NSMT community was beyond welcoming, saying, “The first steps I took into the rehearsal building felt like a warm hug. I am so thankful towards the staff at NSMT and company of Jersey Boys welcoming me with open arms and being genuine angels. I have to give a huge thank you to Kevin P. Hill, the Director/Choreographer, whom I interned under as well as Karen Nascembeni, the General Manager at NSMT, who brought me right in and got involved from the very beginning.” Not only did the creative team welcome Galvin to the theater, but so did the cast. He says, “From the very first day, the cast of Jersey Boys were welcoming and admirable especially; Luke Hamilton, Alaina Mills, Alyssa McAnany, and Mia Gerachis” adding, “these four hold a special place in my heart by being so down to wealth and supportive to me throughout the process.”
Galvin commented on his favorite moment in the rehearsal room, saying, “Every day at NSMT was memorable but my favorite moment wasn’t a part of the show but a moment with Dakota Wiley Horan, the ASM. Day 9 of rehearsals was our Designer Run, which is when several members of the production come to watch a run through in Studio 1. I was assigned to be on-book throughout the run, blurting out the dropped lines of actors throughout the run through. Dakotah pulled me aside at the end of the run through before we left, and she said to me, ‘You know why we don’t talk down to you like a student? It’s because you hold your ground, we appreciate that.’ Galvin recalls that that particular moment “struck me very hard and made me tear up because I felt the love radiating across the room from the company.”
Galvin noted that the musical number that was his favorite to watch live was hands down the finale, “Who Loves You?” He says, “I loved watching the entire cast onstage and having the time of their lives performing to the standing ovation from the audience. Finally, his biggest takeaway from the entire Jersey Boys experience at NSMT was that no matter what you do within a production, you matter. He says, “You can be an intern or a director or the actor playing Frankie Valli, every single person working on a show is vital to the process. You cannot have a show without the lighting operators or the dressers putting the clothes on the back of the actor’s right before they go onstage [...] everyone heads their job that helps the magic of live theatre come together.”
Sadly, the run of Jersey Boys at NSMT has come to an end but I think, both myself and Michael, can agree that it was one for the books. Thanks to Michael Galvin for chatting about me with his experience working at NSMT for this production.
I hope you all enjoyed this insight into the fantastic show that is Jersey Boys.
Sending love and light,