Home Entertainment Alan Cumming on his portrayal of Mayor Menlove in ‘Schmigadoon!’ and...

Alan Cumming on his portrayal of Mayor Menlove in ‘Schmigadoon!’ and working with Bowen Yang (exclusive)

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  Alan Cumming on his portrayal of Mayor Menlove in 'Schmigadoon!'  and working with Bowen Yang (exclusive)

A star of screen and stage, Alan Cumming has no shortage of memorable roles, be it Eli Gold in The good wife o Master of ceremonies in two revivals of Cabaret. While talking to ET, the longtime actor talks about his last two projects, playing Mayor Menlove on the Apple TV + series. Schmigadoon! and directing the Audible podcast Hot white blow.

When it comes to the musical, which was filmed in Vancouver last fall as many projects resumed production during the pandemic, Cumming was ready to go back to work after six months in the Catskills with her husband. And playing an undercover mayor of a 1940s music town in front of artists like Kristin Chenoweth, Fred Armisen, Jane Krakowski, and the leads Cecily Strong and Keegan-Michael Key, was tempting enough.

“First of all, it was really nice to sing again,” says Cumming, adding that his “part is hilarious, the way he’s pining for the minister at Schmigadoon.”

A consignment of the Golden Age of musicals, the show references various Rodgers and Hammerstein productions, including Carousel, Oklahoma! Y The sound of the music. And for Cumming, it was a welcome education, learning more about that era of musical theater. “I loved that this whole structure was like this tribute and a parody at the same time,” he says.

In fact, one of Cumming’s highlights as Mayor Menlove comes in the middle of episode two, “Lover’s Spat.” Alone at the creek, he begins to sing “Somewhere Love Is Waiting for You,” which is a parody of “Some Enchanted Evening” from the 1949 musical. South Pacific.

Schmigadoon
Apple TV +

But it’s later in the season, when the song gets a remarkable and spectacular rerun that Cumming is sure to become a staple among gay fans. “When you go to any gay bar on a Monday, it’s usually musical Mondays all over the world. And whenever I go in, they usually put ‘Willkommen’ from Cabaret. Now, I think it will be, ‘I’m a homosexual,’ ”he says, singing the replay line. “That’s going to ring every time I walk into gay bars.”

While the song is drenched in humor, it is also an emotional breakthrough for the character. And for Cumming, he loved seeing the mayor follow this emotional arc, from “being a cardboard cutout to having this kind of cute story and dealing with it all.”

And while it may seem like an added bonus, having this LGBTQ story while a straight couple tries to figure out if they are truly in love is something that is important to Cumming. “I feel very strong about people living their true selves and comfortable enough to see who they really are,” she says, then adds that it was a conscious decision to make a similar statement with Hot white blow.

Starring a “queer line of talent killers,” including Bowen Yang, who also serves as a writer on Schmigadoon!, Cynthia Nixon, Jane Lynch, Mj Rodriguez, and many, many others, the podcast follows a group of misfits from across the LGBTQ + spectrum as they attempt to steal the frozen sperm of some of the greatest minds in history from a secret bunker below. from Seattle, Washington. Space Needle.

It’s a parody of heist movies, “which is a very direct white domain,” says Cumming, adding that the concept created by Adam Goldman is an example of how to address the “absence of queerness in parts of our culture.”

And when it comes to Yang, who leads the podcast as deluded criminal Jude “Judy” Fink, he really admires her performance. “It was a lot to do, to be in every scene in that series,” says Cumming, adding that they were supposed to work together for the third time, on Yang’s next film. Fire Island, which begins filming later this summer. “I was going to be on it, but my dates didn’t work out with this thing I’m filming.”

That said, Cumming adds, “One of the best things about being an actor is that you work with different people in different kinds of spheres.” And when it comes to Yang, they will soon be working together again if Hot white blow Live to see another day, possibly in another format.

“I like the idea that that group might come back to fight crime, now that they are a team, and see what else they can do,” he says, sharing that he also hopes Schmigadoon! returns for season 2. “There was talk of another series set in another era of musical theater. I think it would be great to all get back together. ”


New episodes of Schmigadoon! they debut on Fridays on Apple TV +.

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