Gavin Waid returns to the Middleton Players Theatre stage with his portrayal of Toby in our season closer Sweeney Todd. Keep reading to find out about Gavin's infatuation with witches, why he once rode a big wheel on stage, and WHO he'll be playing next.
Are you a Madison native? If not, what brought you to the area?
I was born in Lake Wales, Florida. I came to Madison in 2014 to begin my graduate studies at UW – Madison.
Have you done any shows with Middleton Players before?
This is my fourth season with MPT! I have been in Carousel, Jesus Christ Superstar, The Full Monty, 42nd Street, and Ragtime.
What do you enjoy about your character Toby? In what ways are you similar or dissimilar?
Toby is incredibly loyal, kind, and has this huge heart. There is a part of the show where he tells Mrs. Lovett that there isn’t anything he wouldn’t do for her, and that is definitely sincere. I like to think that I am as loyal as Toby, although definitely not as trusting.
What would you like audiences to know about this show?
Yes, the show is dark. Yes, there is an uncomfortable situation with meat pies. But there is also a lot of heart in these characters. Some of them, at least.
What do you do when you’re not performing? Do you have a day job?
I just moved back down to Orlando, FL to be nearer to my family, so I am back to working in the wonderful world of retail! I will be starting rehearsals for The Grinchmas™ Who-liday Spectacular at Universal Studios Orlando soon, where I'll be playing Grandpa Who! So if you are in the area around Christmas time, come say hi!
What was your first stage show and who did you play?
My first ever stage show was in elementary school in the Lake Wales Little Theatre’s production of Sleeping Beauty. I was a singing minstrel. My first professional production was as a seventeen year-old Amahl in Amahl and the Night Visitors. My voice hadn’t changed, yet, so I was still singing in boy soprano land. That changed quickly after that show, though.
What was your strangest experience in theatre?
I was once asked to ride an adult big wheel during a production of a new opera. Let me tell you, it was some of the most fun I have ever had on stage. I got to speed down ramps and do drifts…I even had a little bell!
What is your favorite Broadway musical?
I guess I’ll be that guy and say Into the Woods. It gets me every time.
What is your favorite movie?
Two answers: my favorite animated movie is Disney’s Sleeping Beauty, because I’m from Florida, but also because Maleficent is my ultimate role model. Good outfit, great hair, and super petty. My favorite live-action movie is a tie between Clue and Practical Magic. (Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman as sister witches? Yes please.) Can you tell I really like witches?
What are people going to think about as they drive home from Sweeney Todd?
Oof, this is a tough question for this show! I hope they go home with a craving for some pie…
Where can people go to learn more about you and your projects?
I have a website no one looks at! www.gavinwaid.com