Melanie La Barrie, who plays Juliet’s nurse, Angélique, in the smash hit Broadway comedy musical “& Juliet” is a reason to purchase a ticket. Full stop. She eats the stage, leaving not a crumb in a small role that she managed to make comically and musically massive.
Angelique aka the “nurse” is an essential character in William Shakespeare’s classic play ‘Romeo & Juliet.” La Barrie hails from across the pond (London, England) and has been with ‘&Juliet” since the workshop , original West End productions, and the original cast recordings: & Juliet (WhatsOn Stage Awards nomination). Her other credits include Matilda(Broadwayworld.com nomination), Mary Poppins, and Daddy Cool. West End: Wicked, Les Misérables, Dick Whittington, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, The Lorax, Ragtime, Fiddler on the Roof, Romeo, and Juliet, White Christmas, Guys and Dolls, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, The Sunshine Boys. In the film, she has appeared in London Road, and her television credits include “Casualty” and “Eastenders.”
“& Juliet” plays on Broadway at the Stephen Sondheim Theatre (124 West 43rdStreet) following a sold-out engagement in Toronto, which closed on August 14, 2022, as the third highest-grossing show in Mirvish Productions history. There, the show was nominated for 8 Dora Awards, including Outstanding Musical, Outstanding Direction, Outstanding Performance in a Leading Role (Lorna Courtney, Betsy Wolfe), Outstanding Performance in a Featured Role (Melanie La Barrie), and Outstanding Choreography.
With a book by David West Read, the Emmy Award-winning writer from “Schitt’s Creek,” music from legendary five-time Grammy Award-winning songwriter/producer Max Martin, direction by Luke Sheppard and choreography by Emmy Award-winner Jennifer Weber, & Juliet uses some of the most beloved pop songs of the last three decades to tell a multi-generational story of self-discovery, empowerment, and love.
“& Juliet” flips the script on the greatest love story ever told, imagining what would happen next if Juliet hadn’t ended it all over Romeo, and got a second chance at life and love – on her terms. Juliet’s new story bursts to life through a playlist of pop anthems as iconic as her name, all written by Max Martin and his collaborators, including songs made famous by Kelly Clarkson, Britney Spears, Ariana Grande, the Backstreet Boys, NSYNC, Katy Perry and more.
Here’s what Melanie La Barrie, who plays Juliet’s nurse, Angélique, in “& Juliet” had to share about working in this entertaining musical and living in New York.
NEW JERSEY URBAN NEWS: Melanie La Barrie I loved this musical comedy “& Juliet” and you were that juicy surprise. Plus, I love to laugh, so thank you.
MELANIE LA BARRIE: Thank you. Like you, I love to laugh. Better than crying.
NJUN: Ms. La Barrie, you are a seasoned performer.
MLB: Yes, I started working on stage I actually started singing on stage when I was eight years old. That was back in Trinidad and Tobago. I came to [performing] in theater very late. I was in my 20s. Before that, I used to sing Calypso in Trinidad and Tobago.
NJUN: You’ve been with “& Juliet” since the show’s start. Congrats.
MLB: (laughing) You know, it was so beautiful. When I was asked to read the play, in 2017 when it was in development, how could I say ‘no’ when the music was by [Swedish pop songwriter] Max Martin, with a book by David West Read.
NJUN: I get it. Your accent is musical to my ears but easy to understand. That’s only sometimes the case with people from Trinidad and Tobago.
MLB: According to my British boyfriend, I have three Trinidadian accents. I have the accent that you hear now. I have the accent that I do on stage. And then I have the accent that I use when I’m speaking to my family. Oh, nobody gets it.
NJUN: Except for your family.
MLB: Except for my family. This interview has been edited for length. The show’s social channels are all @andjulietbway Tickets for & Juliet (starting at $89.00) are available at andjulietbroadway.com.