This week BNHM wants to introduce you to our California girl, Rebecca Vigil.
What is your favorite part of the show?
My favorite part of the show is watching Greg Triggs host. Greg makes hosting a show as intricate as Broadway's Next Hit Musical so seamless, clever, sophisticated and hilarious. He is what makes Broadway's Next Hit Musical the complete package, in my opinion. I also love attempting to improvise complex harmonies in our songs. My fellow improvisers have such talented ears, they make it so easy to create something musically unique and complex right there on the spot.
Who or what inspired you to do improv?
In eighth grade, a group of professional improvisers from a group called Comedy Sportz came to teach my "Drama class" an improv workshop. Thirty minutes into that workshop I knew improv and I were going to be together for a very long time. But I had no idea how. That summer, I moved away and started my first year of high school on the opposite side of the country. I was bumbling through the halls one day and I noticed the Comedy Sportz logo posted on the wall. It was a flier advertising auditions for the Comedy Sportz High School League. I was terrified. I knew nothing more about improv than what I had learned for 45 minutes nearly a year ago. But I auditioned and I got cast. Needless to say, improv and I have been in each other's lives nearly every day ever since.
Which came first the singing or the improv?
I have been singing for as long as I can remember. I was that kid who put on shows at the adult parties. (That sounds awful.) I was the kid that would wear a towel dress and a shower cap while lip syncing and "dancing" to the Dirty Dancing soundtrack. (That also sounds awful.) I mean, singing has just always been inside of me. But I didn't start to sing in front of people, purposely, until I was in high school, which pretty much means I started my singing and improvising journeys at the same time. I suppose that is why musical improv, above all the forms and formats I have practiced, remains far and beyond my favorite form of improv.
When you aren't found at the Phony Awards, where might you be out in the city?
It sounds so lame and actor-y but I am probably attending or performing in another show. (If I say it sounds lame and actor-y before you can think it, I am still cool right?) And when I am not dedicating my life to the craft, I walk among the common folk, tasting their wares. And drinking wine.
How do you keep it all together when you are up on stage doing your thing?
I think my secret weapon is trust. I have to trust that my fellow cast members "have my back." I have to believe that we are all making decisions for the good of the show. I have to trust myself and my instincts. In improv, there is simply no time to second-guess any of these decisions. You just have to jump and trust that something will catch you.
What is your most memorable moment in improv?
It would have to be improvising for 300 New Zealanders (or "Kiwis." Though, if I had just said "for 300 kiwis," that would have been infinitely more memorable.) on their home turf. I had been having the most amazing vacation traveling around Australia only to get to fly to New Zealand to do a show with the funniest people I know for 300 hysterically laughing strangers. And all we had to do was make fun of Americans.
What was your first gig in musical improv?
My friend and I loved improvising songs together. In rehearsing with one another, we developed a two person improvised musical format recreating the love story of a couple from the audience. As we were perfecting this format we noticed there were a lot of people in our social circle getting married. So we decided to capitalize on all that happiness and start a business; Your Musical. We were hired for weddings, bachelorette parties, and anniversary celebrations all over Los Angeles to improvise a 30 minute musical recreating how the couple met and how they ultimately fell for one another. We never did seem to book a bachelor party though. Shoulda' showed more boob.
How did you become a part of BNHM?
Musical improv and I were inseparable for many years in Los Angeles but when I moved to New York, getting settled, making friends, and performing anything anywhere sort of pushed musical improv to the side. Finally, I decided to take an eight-week musical improv workshop from a guest instructor I had met recently at my theatre group. This eight week class turned out to be one of the best, most enlightening and extensive musical improv workshops I had taken and it was taught by my, now, fellow cast member Rob Schiffmann. After the eight weeks were over, Rob asked me to audition for Broadway's Next Hit Musical. I was honored. And HIRED! BOOM!
What is it like for you to take the stage here in NYC?
Every time I am on stage in New York City I am realizing a dream I have had ever since I was a little girl. I moved to New York City from 3,000 miles away, knowing no one, having no family, and with only three giant duffle bags carrying my previous life. Now I perform weekly with some of the most talented performers on the scene in the city of my dreams. It is pretty ridiculous how cool that is.