Artscapes: ‘If/Then’ Musical Asks ‘What if?’

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IF-THEN“Regrets, I’ve had a few, but then again, too few to mention.”

Those lyrics from the song “My Way” hint at the “what if?” moments we’ve all had: What if I do this instead of that? What if I say yes to this relationship and no to that one? How would my life change based on a seemingly simple decision?

That’s the basic concept of the musical “If/Then” that comes to Segerstrom Center for a week starting Jen. 19.

This contemporary musical stars Broadway superstar Idina Menzel (“Wicked,” “Rent,” “Frozen”), Anthony Rapp (“Rent”), LaChanze (“The Color Purple”) and James Snyder (“Cry-Baby”), and follows two distinct storylines in the life of Elizabeth (Menzel), a city planner who moves back to New York to restart her life in this city of infinite possibilities. When her carefully designed plans collide with the whims of fate, Elizabeth’s life splits into two parallel paths. “If/Then” follows both stories simultaneously as this modern woman faces the intersection of choice and chance.

If/Then Richard Rodgers TheatreActor Marc Delacruz, who plays David in the show, has had his share of “what if” moments. He obtained his B.A. degree in International/Global Studies from University of Washington, but has always loved to dance, and act. He made a decision at one point to pursue his dream, and has never looked back.

“I wasn’t sure what I wanted to study,” explained Delacruz during a recent phone interview. “I wanted to do something related to international relations, but at the same time I started dancing, and taking classes from the dance department. I loved it, and by the time I graduated I wanted to minor in dance.”

His minor became a major attraction. He began performing in local theaters throughout Seattle, one thing led to another, and he eventually realized this was the world he wanted to be in.

“It took a long time to say to myself, this is what I want to be doing,” said Delacruz. “I was afraid of committing, and saying I am an actor, this is all I want to do. But once I said that, it was easy. I moved to New York, continued my training and auditioning. It’s funny when I think about it, because it is what I have wanted to do since I was a kid, but I didn’t think it was possible, or I was too scared to actually pursue it”

“Sometimes I think of my character as another possible me—he’s about the same age,” added Delacruz. “I take a lot of comfort in the themes of the show, I think it is a universal experience to wonder what might have happened if we had taken another path. It’s okay to have those thoughts, it’s okay to have regrets, it’s okay to wonder, and also to be okay with the choices you have made. I identify—those themes really resonate in my life, and gives it another layer of meaning. It’s a powerful show in that regard.”

Delacruz noted that audiences throughout the country have embraced the show, and the themes.

“Audiences have loved it, it’s New York centric so it’s been interesting to see how it plays in other cities. People are really excited about it. I talk to people at stage door after every performance and they thank us for coming to our town, they talk about how their lives have been changed by the show, how closely it resonates with what they are going through in life. For some people it hits really close to home. It’s satisfying to go around the country and see how it does that for people everywhere.”

For tickets to “If/Then,” visit SCFTA.org.

 

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