People are loving Hugh Jackman‘s rousing speech singing the praises for some of the unsung heroes of Broadway, namely: understudies and swings, the performers who must step in when the actor for a certain role cannot make it.
Such was the case last week during a preview show for Music Man, starring the Logan actor, in which co-star Sutton Foster had tested positive for Covid-19 and the leading lady role was instead brought to life by Kathy Voytko.
Jackman gave a speech heaping praise on Voytko and others, which was first shared on Instagram by actor Katherine Winter. “Take it from me, real superheroes do not wear capes,” Jackman said.
Jackman explained that when Voytko showed up at work at noon during the fourth preview for the classic musical, she “could’ve played any of eight roles.”
“She found out at 12 noon today, and at 1 o’clock, she had her very first rehearsal as Marian Paroo.”
He added that when it comes to all the swings in the show, “their courage, their brilliance, their dedication, their talent,” humbles him and added they and the understudies “are the bedrock of Broadway!”
The speech quickly made the rounds on social media where it spread smiles for theater fans across Twitter.
One fan pointed out how It’s especially nice to see a movie star like Jackman giving recognition for up-and-comers when actors in the live theater realm are so often succumbing to positive covid tests these days.
Another fan gave the moniker “King of Broadway” to Jackson, who first began to be recognized as a talent outside of Australia with his starring role in Oklahoma! in London’s West End before ever donning the Adamantium claws he is known for while portraying Wolverine in the X-Men movies.
Jackman will be starring in Music Man on Broadway in New York City through November 6, 2022, according to the musical’s website.