#BehindtheCurtain: Get to Know Jonathan Sangster!
From appearing in regional productions at the Old Globe, Cygnet, 3D Theatricals, to appearing in the Broadway National Tour of the Book of Mormon as a standby for Elder Cunningham, Jonathan lives and breathes musical theatre. Apart from commanding the stage, Jonathan is a writer, working on new musicals, and presenting them in NYC. In Plaid Tidings, you know Jonathan as Jinx—but we want you to get to know him as the multi-talented artist that he is.
What is your role, and what’s his story?
I play the role of Jinx in Plaid Tidings! Jinx is one of the four guys in this harmony group, tasked with singing the tenor 1 (aka, THE HIGH STUFF) in the group. He also may or may not be prone to nosebleeds if he has to sing anything over a certain high note. Step brother to other Plaid, Sparky, Jinx would rather let any of the other Plaids be in the limelight as he doesn’t care to receive too much attention. He would rather just sing as he is the more shy guy of the group. He’s loyal, excitable, and the holidays were always his favorite time in life!
What inspired you to get into musical theater?
As a kid I was obsessed with watching Mary Martin’s Peter Pan. I watched it almost every day over at my grandparents. That and Wizard of Oz. Those were my introduction to musical theatre. Thought it wasn’t until my freshman year of high school, when my school did a production of Into The Woods, where I thought “oh wow, I think I want to DO this!” I ended up ushering every performance (I was too scared to audition for the show at the time) because I couldn’t get enough of watching that show and being enthralled with this art form. From there, I was hooked and never really looked back!
What was your first introduction to “Plaid Tidings” ?
My senior year of high school, the barbershop quartet did a production of Forever Plaid, to which I saw a few times as well. That was my first introduction to the world of Plaid. The first time I ever actually saw Plaid Tidings was at the Welk here in San Diego, starring some of San Diego’s best! Then, last year in 2021, I was contacted by a colleague who was my Music Director on The Book of Mormon tour, who would be music directing a production of Plaid Tidings on Nantucket, and asked if I was free to do the show. I of course said yes and spent 6 weeks on the island getting to perform this wonderful show for the first time.
Do you relate to your character?
I definitely relate to his love of Christmas!! Haha! There’s something about this time of year that I’m always drawn to. I love the warmth it tends to bring to peoples hearts, and always try to find a way to spread love and happiness.
What’s the first thing you would do if you went to heaven?
I think I would immediately find my Great Grandmother, Mamaw, who was a tap dancer and vaudeville performer in the 20’s and 30’s, and finally get to sing and dance with her as an adult. When I was little, we would take walks together and she would teach me time steps on the sidewalk. Then maybe the two of us will go track down Mary Martin and Judy Garland and the four of us can sing and dance a little something together!
Favorite Christmas song and why?
It’s a tie with “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas” and “I’ll Be Home For Christmas.”
To me, they are both the epitome of Christmas nostalgia and the ideals of spreading good cheer and love. I definitely try and channel my inner Judy Garland when we, the Plaids, get to sing “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas” at the end of the show!
Oh boy, this one is a hard question to answer! I love performing and being on stage and can find the joy and meaning of any role I am offered to embody. I would love to take on The Baker in Into The Woods one day! However, I’m such a big advocate of new works, so I like to say my ultimate dream role is creating a new role from the ground up. Something in a story that is yet to be told. The only way this amazing art form can thrive is by creating new musicals with new stories to tell. So whether that’s creating a new role in a story on stage, or being a creator of a new musical, like one I’m currently working on (check out the musical I’m currently writing “boy: a new musical” at boyanewmusical.com), that’s ultimately the dream role for me!
Director: David Humphrey
Musical Director: Richard Dueñez Morrison
CLICK HERE to buy tickets!