Although he’s best known as the goofy Canadian Danny Baker in “30 Rock” or the voice coach of Vocal Adrenaline in “Glee,” Cheyenne Jackson is also celebrated as a talented singer.
Jackson will be singing in his first-ever appearance in New Orleans on Friday, Nov. 7, at 7:30 p.m. as part of the series Broadway @ NOCCA.
“I’ve been singing since I could walk,” said the Newport, Washington, native who has sold out Carnegie Hall twice — in 2010 in a concert with Michael Feinstein, and again in 2011 for a solo debut concert with the New York Pops titled “Music of the ‘Mad Men’ Era.”
Jackson’s smooth style and delivery conjure up the age of slicked-back hair and martini lunches. “I’ve always been told I was born in the wrong era,” he says. “My voice and my look is more old-fashioned, but I’ve grown to embrace it.”
True to its name, Jackson’s one-night-only performance will showcase favorites from Broadway shows — of which he’s performed in more than his fair share — but it will also include at least one of his original songs, some pop offerings, “and a few surprises,” he says.
Some of these surprises may come in the discussion he’ll be having on stage with famed pianist and humorist Seth Rudetsky.
Currently the host of Sirius XM satellite radio’s Broadway station, Rudetsky will accompany Jackson musically, but will also serve as host for the evening.
“It’s going to be a bit like ‘Inside the Actor’s Studio’ meets a concert,” Jackson says. That is, of course, if you replaced James Lipton with a man who Stand-Up NY has deemed the “Funniest Gay Male in NY” and who’s been nominated three times for an Emmy for comedic writing.
“Seth is hilarious and we’ve been friends for over 10 years now,” Jackson says. “He knows a lot about me, and I never know what he’s going to ask.”
With no subject off limits, Rudetsky will have plenty of material.
“I’ve had a crazy past few years,” Jackson says. “I’ve gotten divorced, become sober, remarried, moved across the country — there’s a lot to talk about, but we’re going to do it in a way that’s really fun and funny. It’s really about life, and some really great, great, music.”
Broadway @ NOCCA is part of an international Broadway @ series founded in 2011 by Mark Cortale, producing artistic director at The Art House in Provincetown, Massachusetts. The series has since expanded throughout the U.S. and into London and Australia, featuring Broadway stars from Patti LuPone and Chita Rivera, to Megan Mullally and Bryan Batt.
Jackson’s performance will be the first in the three performance Broadway @ NOCCA series, all of which will he hosted and musically accompanied by Rudetsky.
The series will continue on March 28 with “Saturday Night Live” star Ana Gasteyer, and conclude May 23 with two-time Tony Award-winner Christine Ebersole.