From Connecticut to NYC and Back Again!
There are so many incredibly talented actors working on Broadway, on National Tours, and at some of the most prestigious regional theaters across the country. And many of these accomplished performers hail right from our area! Connecticut has always been a hotbed of talent, and so it is no wonder that, when thumbing through a Broadway Playbill, many cast members give a shout-out to their Connecticut hometowns!
Ridgefield’s ACT of CT is entering its 5th season this fall and has achieved incredible success since opening its doors in 2018 (including a Grammy Nomination for its cast album of Stephen Schwartz’s SNAPSHOTS!).
Actors with multiple Broadway credits jump at the opportunity to be cast in an ACT of CT production. The theater's productions are always nothing less than Broadway caliber, and it is no wonder that any ACT of CT cast list reads like a regular “who’s who” on Broadway. And, not surprisingly, a handful of these wildly talented performers are Connecticut born and bred!
ACT of CT’s upcoming production of GUYS AND DOLLS runs from Oct 27 through Nov 20 and stars some unbelievable Broadway talent - like Donna Vivino from Broadway’s WICKED, and Phil Sloves from Broadway’s SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS.
The show is directed by Daniel C. Levine (from Broadway’s LES MISERABLES, MAMMA MIA, CHICAGO, JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR, and ROCKY HORROR SHOW), choreographed by Sara Brians (from Broadway’s MATILDA and BILLY ELLIOTT), and music supervised by Bryan Perri (from Broadway’s WICKED, JAGGED LITTLE PILL, and ALMOST FAMOUS). Featured in the production are 24 of the most talented actors (literally at the top of their game), some of whom are Connecticut natives and residents who are returning “home” to be a part of this remarkable production.
Meet Matt Faucher, Michael Boland, Michael McGuirk, Val Moranto, and Richard Westfahl: all professional and successful actors (some with Broadway credits) who will be on stage in Ridgefield at ACT of CT performing in their upcoming musical, GUYS AND DOLLS!
Meet Val Moranto
Q: What is your connection to Connecticut?
A: I moved to Connecticut full-time (with my husband) from NYC in 2011. I had lived in NYC for 12 years before that. We bought a house in 2007 and lived in both CT and NYC for four years as I couldn’t think of committing to leaving NYC and moving to the beautiful woods of North Guilford. But now being here full time for 11 years, I love it! It is truly the best of both worlds living/working in CT and still doing lots of TV/Film work in NYC!
Q: Why are regional theaters (like ACT of CT) so very important?
A: Regional theatres like ACT of CT are super important because they bring Broadway-caliber productions to their communities for those who cannot get out to see shows on Broadway or in other larger cities. ACT of CT gives so much back to the beautiful community of Ridgefield and receives so much love and support from that community in return!
Q: You have worked in so many productions at so many theaters across the country. This will be your third show at ACT of CT. What is it about ACT of CT that keeps you wanting to return?
A: With one Broadway show and two Broadway National tours on my checklist, plus the various regional theatres I’ve worked at, ACT of CT has been one of my all-time favorite regional theatres to work at! What truly keeps me coming back are so many factors including how well I have been treated by the staff, the gorgeous production values and the true collaboration of the top-notch creative teams while working with their actors!
But the #1 reason for me, personally, is Daniel C. Levine’s brilliant visions and thinking outside the box with his masterfully produced & directed productions. For me, it has meant so much to me for Daniel to see me in so many versatile ways and roles: trusting that I could swing Smokey Joe’s Café and truly capture the various different and fierce women in that show; knowing that for Jesus Christ Superstar, I had a pretty hardcore rock voice to contribute but could also execute a strong-featured character like the Female Authority Figure; and then to turn around and give this Gospel, Soul Singing, R&B girl a chance to be in my 1st classic show like Guys and Dolls! He has given me opportunities that no one else would necessarily take a chance on. I feel like it is a nurturing environment in which to create and play and take risks and for that, I couldn’t be more thankful.
Working & creating at ACT of CT truly feels like my home away from home!