|Jason Wilhoite plays Seymour Krelborn|
Have you ever seen a show and thought, “That actor was born to play that part!” Although Jason Wilhoite and Seymour Krelborn may not have been separated at birth, Jason admits that “playing Seymour has honestly been a goal and dream of mine since I was about 15 years old.” Jason has obviously given a lot of thought to Little Shop of Horrors and Seymour over the past 20 years: “I love the story, the music and complexity Seymour brings. He comes across as naïve and unsure at first, but grows with Audrey II in his confidence while still keeping his boyish charms. I love the counterpoint of a hero the audience grows to love and support, yet at the same time in a completely premeditated fashion this hero allows people to be eaten by Audrey II for his own gain.”
Jason was last on the Barn stage a year ago, wowing audiences with his singing talents as Leo Bloom in The Producers, so it will come as no surprise that he finds it “so much fun to sing this show. It has an amazing mix of musical theatre feel, blues, rock, 60’s do-op. I have had a blast learning the music [including “Suddenly Seymour,” “Feed Me,” and “Grow for Me”] and I hope our audience enjoys it half as much as I have.”
So if singing is in Jason’s sweet spot, what’s his biggest challenge about playing Seymour? “Seymour runs all the bases emotionally and provides me with a huge challenge. Making him believable and earnest as he ranges in emotion from naïve botanical ‘genius’, terrified, unsure, elated happiness, passionate and caring, calculated murdering accomplice, anger, deepest of sorrow in losing the only thing he ever loved to final desperation in trying to put an end to the road he has traveled. It’s really is an outstanding journey and I hope I can bring that all to life.”
Although he’s wanted to do Little Shop for 20 years, Jason feels “lucky to be doing the show now with the amount of experience I have in the rear view mirror. Both from a life perspective as well as my acting and singing training and experience. It's been a real joy to do the show at this time with so many people I care deeply about and some new additions to my world who I have grown to love. I feel blessed that our paths have crossed.” Jason has been a member of the Farmington Players for seven years and this is his third show involving director Rachael Rose, of whom he says, “We make a great team and I have truly valued the chance to have her direct me in this show.” Some of Jason’s favorite Barn credits include: The Producers (Leo Bloom), You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown (Charlie), Guys and Dolls (Nicely Nicely Johnson), John & Jen (John), Sweet Charity (Musical Director) and Gypsy (Director).
Get your tickets to Little Shop of Horrors at www.farmingtonplayers.org or by calling the Farmington Players box office at 248-553-2955. The show opens Friday April 27 and runs through May 19.