Douglas Sills
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Douglas Sills

Douglas Sills
Born
Douglas Howard Sills

(1960-07-05) July 5, 1960 (age 59)
Alma materUniversity of Michigan

Douglas Howard Sills (born July 5, 1960) is an American actor.[1]

Early life

Sills was born in Detroit, Michigan, the son of Rhoda (Nemeth) and Archie Sills,[2][3] and grew up in the suburb of Franklin, in a Jewish household.[4] He was friends (and did amateur theatrics and films) with both Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell.[1] Sills attended Cranbrook School, from which he graduated in 1978, and the University of Michigan where he majored in music. He then continued his education at the American Conservatory Theater in California.

Career

During the 1990s, Sills built a solid reputation as a stage character actor, especially in the professional theaters of southern California. He also performed in several national tours, including Into the Woods and The Secret Garden, which would also feature future Broadway stars as James Stacy Barbour and Audra McDonald. He met his partner, Todd, in 1994 while touring with The Secret Garden.[5] His first Broadway role, however, came when composer Frank Wildhorn and lyricist Nan Knighton approached him in hopes of finding a male lead for their new musical, The Scarlet Pimpernel. Before this audition, Sills told his agent not to send him to any more auditions because he planned to attend law school. With a score in the 99th percentile on the Law School Admission Test (LSAT), Sills hoped to attend Stanford Law School. However, being a fan of the movie as a child, Sills decided to give acting one more chance and was offered the lead as Sir Percy Blakeney.[6]

Douglas Sills opened in his first Broadway show on November 9, 1997. Continuing the role in three other versions of the show, Sills received a Tony Award nomination. He portrayed the foppish hero in SP 1.0 (The Original Broadway Production, starring Terrence Mann, Christine Andreas & Gilles Chiason), SP 2.0 (Revised Broadway Production, starring Rachel York & Rex Smith), and for several months in the National Tour (4.0).[7][8] Although rumored as the title role of Wildhorn's Dracula, the Musical, Sills opted out (despite doing a recording demo), and rather Tom Hewitt portrayed the gothic character at the premiere at the La Jolla Playhouse in 2001.[] He played Orin Scrivello, and several other roles in the 2003 Broadway revival cast of Little Shop of Horrors.[9]

In 2004, Sills joined the Broadway-bound Chicago production of Monty Python's Spamalot.[10] However, before the production began, Sills left on his own account due to reported "major script changes."[11] In early 2005, production plans were announced for Wildhorn's new musical Cyrano de Bergerac, from the same team that helped launch his career with The Scarlet Pimpernel.[12] The title role was written specifically for Sills,[13] however, producers dropped plans for the show in spring 2006 without explanation. A studio-concept recording was planned, starring Sills, Linda Eder and Rob Evan, but plans also quickly fell through.

In 2009, Sills starred opposite Kristin Chenoweth at the Encores! New York City Center production of Music in the Air, a long-forgotten Kern-Hamerstein musical from the 1930s. The concert-style version ran February 5 through February 8.[14] Sills assumed the role of Gomez Addams in the national tour of The Addams Family in September 2011 until the company's closing on December 30, 2012.[15]

From March 27 to April 12, 2013, Sills took on the role of Jack in Long Wharf Theatre's production of William Mastrosimone's Ride the Tiger.[16]

Sills played Walter Burns in La Jolla Playhouse's production of His Girl Friday from May 28 to June 30, 2013.[17]

Sills appeared on Broadway beginning in April 2015, playing an aging orchestra conductor in the comedy Living on Love, written by Joe DiPietro, starring Renee Fleming, Jerry O'Connell and Anna Chlumsky.[18]

He appears in the new musical Dave at the Arena Stage in Washington, D.C., starting in July 2018, in the role of Chief of Staff Bob Alexander. The musical has music by Tom Kitt, lyrics by Nell Benjamin, and the book by Benjamin and Thomas Meehan and is based on the 1993 film Dave.[19]

Notable theatre roles

Show: Role(s): Year(s): Production:
Into the Woods Rapunzel's Prince

Cinderella's Prince(Understudy)

The Wolf(Understudy)

1988-1990 US Tour
The Philadelphia Story C.K. Dexter Haven 1992 Cosa Mesa, California
The Secret Garden Dr. Neville Craven

Archibald Craven(Understudy)

1992-1994 US Tour
She Stoops to Folly Ned Thornhill 1995 Cosa Mesa, California
Chess Freddie 1995 Los Angeles, California
The Scarlet Pimpernel Percy Blakeney/The Scarlet Pimpernel 1997-2000 Broadway
The Scarlet Pimpernel Percy Blakeney/The Scarlet Pimpernel 2000 US Tour
Mack and Mabel Mack Sennett 2000 Los Angeles, California
Much Ado About Nothing Benedict 2001 Cosa Mesa, California
Show Boat Gaylord Ravenal 2001 Hollywood, California
Carnival Marco 2002 New York, New York
Wish Upon a Star N/A 2002 New York, New York(Workshop)
A Little Night Music Count Carl-Magnus Malcolm 2002 Washington, D.C.
The Gondoliers Don Alhambra 2003 New York, New York
Little Shop of Horrors Orin Scrivello

Narrator

Wino #2

Customer

Radio Announcer

Bernstein

Mrs. Luce

Skip Snip

Patrick Martin

2003-2004 Broadway
Midnight and Magnolias David O. Selznick 2005 Off-Broadway
On the Twentieth Century Oscar Jaffee 2005 Broadway
Music in the Air Bruno Mahler 2009 New York, New York
The Addams Family Gomez Addams 2011-2012 US Tour
Ride the Tiger Jack 2013 New Haven, Connecticut
His Girl Friday Walter Burns 2013 San Diego, Los Angeles
Lady, Be Good! J. Watterson Watkins 2015 Off-Broadway
Living on Love Vito De Angelis 2015 Broadway
War Paint Harry Fleming 2016 Chicago(World Premiere)
War Paint Harry Fleming 2017 Broadway
Hey, Look Me Over! N/A 2018 Off-Broadway
Dave Chief of Staff Bob Alexander 2018 Washington, D.C.
Nantucket Sleigh Ride Dr. Harbinger

Shuyler

Walt Disney

2019 Off-Broadway
Mack and Mabel Mack Sennett 2020 Off-Broadway

References

  1. ^ a b Blank, Matthew. "CUE & A: Tony-Nominated My Favorite Year Star Douglas Sills on Jerry Orbach, Talking to Animals and His Hebrew Name" Playbill, December 2, 2014
  2. ^ "Douglas Sills" filmreference.com
  3. ^ [1] tachna.com
  4. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on May 8, 2016. Retrieved 2012.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) ljn.com
  5. ^ "Douglas Sills" Archived February 2, 2014, at the Wayback Machine fenuxe.com
  6. ^ Sam Whiting (April 2, 2000). "Master of Disguise: 'Pimpernel' star could have been mistaken for a lawyer, or 'just' a singer". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2011.
  7. ^ Ernio Hernandez (November 19, 2004). "Douglas Sills Leaves Upcoming Broadway Musical Monty Python's Spamalot". Playbill. Archived from the original on July 19, 2008. Retrieved 2011.
  8. ^ Ernio Hernandez (February 5, 2009). "PHOTO CALL: There Is Music in the Air at City Center". Playbill. Archived from the original on April 12, 2009. Retrieved 2011.
  9. ^ Ernio Hernandez (July 15, 2009). "Three Knights and a Lady Join Monty Python's Spamalot Round Table". Playbill. Archived from the original on June 8, 2008. Retrieved 2011.
  10. ^ Andrew Gans (August 14, 2003). "Frank Wildhorn Penning New Cyrano Musical for Pimpernel Star". Playbill. Archived from the original on November 22, 2008. Retrieved 2011.
  11. ^ Andrew Gans (July 8, 2003). "Be a Dentist: Douglas Sills Offered Role of Orin in Broadway Little Shop". Playbill. Archived from the original on May 12, 2009. Retrieved 2011.
  12. ^ Kenneth Jones (December 22, 1999). "Douglas Sills Will Buckle His Swash For Scarlet Pimpernel Tour in 2000". Playbill. Archived from the original on September 7, 2012. Retrieved 2011.
  13. ^ Kenneth Jones (February 20, 2009). "Douglas Sills Swashbuckles Into Pimpernel Tour Feb. 20 in CT". Playbill. Archived from the original on February 1, 2013. Retrieved 2011.
  14. ^ Robert Simonson (January 31, 2005). "Frank Wildhorn's Cyrano to Play London in Spring 2006". Playbill. Archived from the original on March 9, 2005. Retrieved 2011.
  15. ^ Andrew Adler (September 20, 2011). "'Addams Family' creative team comes to New Orleans". The Times-Picayune. New Orleans. Retrieved 2011.
  16. ^ " 'Ride the Tiger' " broadwayworld.com, March 1, 2013
  17. ^ "Patrick Kerr, Mary Beth Peil and More Set for La Jolla Playhouse's 'His Girl Friday'; Full Cast Announced!" broadwayworld.com, April 16, 2013
  18. ^ Brantley, Ben. "Review: Renée Fleming Plays Against Type in 'Living on Love'" The New York Times, April 20, 2015
  19. ^ Gans, Andrew. "World Premiere of 'Dave' Musical, Starring Drew Gehling and Mamie Parris, Opens at Arena Stage July 27" Playbill, July 27, 2018

External links


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