Entertainment

Exclusive Interview With Tiffany Engen Of The National Tour Of Kinky Boots

headshot1Kinky Boots, the smash-hit musical that brings together four-time Tony® Award-winner Harvey Fierstein (Book) and Grammy® Award-winning rock icon Cyndi Lauper (Tony Award-winner for Best Score for Kinky Boots), opens at Bass Concert Hall on November 10 – 15, 2015. Austin Entertainment Weekly’s Laura Jordan took some time to chat with Tiffany Engen who plays Lauren in this ground breaking musical.

AEW:  Kinky Boots has made huge waves since it started, as a female artist how does it feel to present this show that won best musical and made history by being the first show to do that written by a female?

TE: I feel so lucky to be a part of a show that brings so much joy to people. I remember the first time I ever saw the show, I felt like my heart was going to burst. I laughed, I cried…It was a uniquely profound theatre experience.  And that is because of Cyndi Lauper’s score and what she and Harvey Fierstein and Jerry Mitchell have worked together to create.  It’s a special show that is changing people’s hearts and minds. “You change the world when you change your mind”.

AEW:  Compared to the other shows you have been a part of how has this show been different, besides getting to wear some amazing shoes of course?

TE: The rehearsal process has been a blast from day one.  The music is a dream.  The choreography is so joy-filled and then you get to work on these beautifully written scenes that are sweet, and funny, dramatic, passionate and poignant.  And then you get to try on and practice in these fabulous Kinky Boots. When they first bring the boots to rehearsal, it literally feels like Christmas morning.  You can’t help but feel giddy inside as you take your first steps and watch your fellow castmates take their first steps in these fabulous boots.

AEW:  What are your favorite Kinky Boots Memories?

I am new to the cast so everything that has happened so far has been my favorite memory! Ha 🙂   Getting the call that I had booked my dream role as Lauren was a moment I will never forget.

AEW:  What are some of your dream roles? Where does Kinky Boots fit into those?

TE: The role of Lauren in Kinky Boots was a huge dream of mine.  Other roles I have always wanted to play would be Fanny Brice in Funny Girl, Lilly St. Regis in Annie, and if they ever make the film Big Business into a musical, I really want to be the Bette Midler twins (I also happen to have a twin sister in the business)
AEW:  What do you want Audiences to leave feeling or thinking after seeing Kinky Boots?

TE: I hope people feel joy on a whole new level. I also hope audiences feel like their hearts and minds have opened.  The final number of the show lists the 6 steps to success….I hope all audiences take those steps out into the world.

step 1:  pursue the truth

step 2:  learn something new

step 3:  accept yourself and you’ll accept others too

step 4:  let love shine

step 5:  let pride be your guide

step 6:  you change the world when you change your mind.

AEW:  What is your favorite scene or song in Kinky Boots?

TE: Well, since I have dreamed of this role and getting to sing Lauren’s song, “The History of Wrong Guys”……that is one of my favorites.  But the song that really gets me every time is “I’m Not My Father’s Son”.

AEW:  What advise do you have for young performers who want to make a career of performing?

TE: Pursue the fun and chase the joy no matter what.  Being an actor has it’s ups and downs.  The business can be tough and there will be times when you are not working but you may be auditioning or in an ongoing acting class. Find the joy and fun in the audition process.  Learn from every experience, every class, every audition.

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