Laura Osnes’ Broadway career got off to an unusual start. Instead of going through the standard cattle-call audition process, she took part in the nationally televised reality competition “Grease: You’re the One that I Want!” in 2007, which cast the stars of the Grease revival on the Great White Way. Osnes was a fan favorite from the beginning and ultimately scored the role of leading lady Sandy. After Grease’s Broadway run, she went on to play leading parts in South Pacific, Anything Goes and Bonnie & Clyde, plus many regional productions. Now, Osnes returns to the Broadway stage to take on a classic, playing the title role in Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella. The revamped fairy tale opens at the Broadway Theatre in NYC March 3. Want to know more about the show’s stunning star? Read on for The Dirt.
What did you want to be when you were a teen?
An actress on Broadway.
If you could dance with any performer, past or present, who would it be?
Oh, Gene Kelly! Except I could never keep up.
Most-played song on your iPod:
I’m kind of embarrassed to admit this, but it’s a song called “This Never Happened Before” that was cut from Bonnie & Clyde. Fortunately, we got to record it as a bonus track on the cast album, and I still love to listen to it.
New: Wizard of Oz
Old: Lord of the Rings Trilogy.
I’ve seen them all way too many times—and I’m so excited for The Hobbit!
Biggest guilty pleasure:
Ice creeeeeeeam. Just kidding. Probably peanut butter.
Things you can’t live without:
My husband—and our dog Lyla
What are your pet peeves?
Slow walkers on NYC streets and cleaning Lyla’s potty off the floor
Who’s your dance crush?
Ryan Steele, duh.
What’s the strangest thing in your dance bag?
All my dance stuff is in a bin under the bed. The strangest thing in there’s a bag of bobby pins with rhinestones on them left over from my dance competition days.
Do you have any pre-performance habits?
I’ve made a tradition of “planking” before or during every show, and I also do lots of lip-trills.
What’s your dream role?
Belle in Beauty & the Beast or Marion Paroo in The Music Man
What’s your most embarrassing onstage moment?
It was during a matinee performance of South Pacific on Broadway for a bunch of students. I was wearing only a bathing suit, and I tripped and fell on one of the set pieces with my bare legs flailing everywhere. The kids were not forgiving with their laughter. I made it through the scene, but started bawling the second I got offstage. I was so embarrassed.
What has been your proudest onstage moment so far?
I think that would be taking my bow on opening night of Grease on Broadway. It was my very first Broadway show, and I will never forget that moment. My dream had come true.